PTI's Election Symbol 'Cricket Bat' Reinstated by Peshawar High Court Ahead of General Elections

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PTI's Election Symbol 'Cricket Bat' Reinstated by Peshawar High Court Ahead of General Elections

PTI's Election Symbol 'Cricket Bat' Reinstated by Peshawar High Court Ahead of General Elections

In a significant development just weeks before Pakistan's general elections on February 8, the Peshawar High Court (PHC) reinstated, for the second time, the 'cricket bat' as the electoral symbol for Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) political party. The court deemed the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP)'s previous decision to strip the party of its symbol as "illegal."

The PHC's two-member bench in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa held that the ECP's move to revoke the PTI's symbol last month was based on grounds that violated the constitution and election laws during the party's internal organizational elections. The reinstatement order comes as a boost for PTI, led by Imran Khan, a celebrated cricketer who led Pakistan to its only World Cup win in 1992.

The ECP had initially taken away PTI's



electoral symbol on December 22, prompting the party to appeal the decision in the PHC. Despite a subsequent reversal by the same court on January 3 in favor of the ECP, PTI persisted in its legal battle, filing an additional appeal with Pakistan's Supreme Court. However, the PTI withdrew its appeal from the apex court today, expressing confidence in a favorable outcome from the PHC's two-member bench, which was indeed realized hours later.

Senator Ali Zafar, a senior PTI leader and member of the party's legal team, asserted that the court's decision validated the party's commitment to justice and truth. Despite facing challenges, including rejected nominations and legal issues, PTI remains determined to participate in the upcoming elections, emphasizing its trust in the country's constitution and legal processes.

Imran Khan's party came to power in 2018 amid allegations of support from Pakistan's powerful establishment. Khan's popularity surged during his tenure, marked by confrontations with the military establishment. Despite his removal from office in April 2022, Khan remains popular, currently in prison and facing multiple legal challenges. The reinstatement of PTI's symbol sets the stage for a closely watched electoral contest amid a shifting political landscape, including the return of another former prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, to Pakistan.

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