Strong reaction by coalition partners following verdict of SC

The coalition government responded strongly on Tuesday to the Supreme Court's verdict to place Pervez Elahi as Chief Minister of Punjab by removing Hamza Shahbaz from the upper echelons of the province.

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The Supreme Court declared the ruling of Deputy Speaker Dost Muhammad Mazari in the election of the Chief Minister of Punjab “illegal” and decided that PTI’s nominee, Pervez Elahi, will be the province’s new CM.

The three-member bench also instructed Punjab Governor Baligh ur Rehman to administer Elahi’s oath at 11:30 p.m., adding that if he refuses to carry out his duties, President Arif Alvi will administer the oath.

“We will make no compromises on constitutional supremacy”: PM Shehbaz.

In response to the verdict, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif cautioned that the Constitution has given state powers to the parliament, the administration, and the judiciary.

“The constitution gave all institutions a mandate to work within the specified limits,” he wrote on Twitter, adding that the institution cannot interfere with another institution’s authority.

“We [the current government] will not compromise on the supremacy of the constitution and parliament,” the Prime Minister wrote.

Prime Minister Shehbaz added that fair justice and the reputation of the judiciary required the formation of a full court so that “justice is not only carried out but also seen.”

“The Supreme Court’s verdict has swept away the expectations of the people, the legal community, the petitioners,” he added.

“Judicial coup,” said PML-N vice-president Maryam Nawaz in a tweet, who was a few hours before the verdict called on the government to take a firm position on the issue.

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Supremo of PML-N and former prime minister Nawaz Sharif took to his Twitter to “greet the three judges”, who heard the case.

“[Order] has ridiculed Pakistan,” he wrote.

The former chief minister of Punjab and PML-N leader Hamza Shahbaz expressed his sadness over the court’s judgment, stating that the government elected by the people’s votes was sent home by a “contentious verdict”.

“Has the assembly’s status turned into a rubber stamp?” he asked, adding that over the past four months, the country’s biggest province has become a “laughingstock”.

Hamza further said that “justice was killed” when the top court dismissed PML-N’s appeal of forming a full bench.

Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb told a press conference that it was “clear” a day earlier that this decision will be announced today.

“This decision is equivalent to a judicial coup d’état […] and it will lead to anarchy and the division of the nation. More than half the people in Pakistan do not accept it,” said Aurangzeb.

Minister of Labour Sindh and PPP leader Saeed Ghani tweeted that he was surprised that the Supreme Court ordered the governor or the president to administer Elahi’s oath.

“If we say something, then they will despise us,” said Ghani.

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