No decision yet on allocation of reserved seats to SIC

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ISLAMABAD: A decision on whether to allocate reserved seats in the National Assembly and provincial assemblies to Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) after an alliance with Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has remained pending.

The ECP was requested to allot the seats on the basis of the inclusion of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-backed candidates in their party. In this regard, a request drafted by SIC Chairman Sahibzada Hamid Raza was submitted with the electoral watchdog through a PTI representative.

On Monday, the PTI announced that its independent candidates would join the Sunni Ittehad Council to form governments at the Centre, in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in a bid to secure reserved seats.

The PTI candidates contested the elections as independents after the Supreme Court upheld the election supervisor s decision, considering its intra-party polls “unconstitutional” and revoked its claim on the electoral symbol of bat .

Sources told ARY News that a meeting of Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) was held to discuss the matters related to allocation of reserved seats to Sunni Ittehad Council. However, the meeting ended without any conclusion.

In this regard, the electoral watchdog has summoned another meeting on Monday in which Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) will review the application for reserve seats.

As per the Constitution, the reserved seats are allocated to the political parties on the basis of the number of their lawmakers elected on the general seats. For their allocation, the ECP had already received the priority list of candidates from the parties before the Feb 8 polls.

Read More: Sunni Ittehad Council vows to bring own PM as PTI independents join party

The situation this year is different from the previous elections as the largest group of lawmakers are independents, who cannot have the reserved seats.

There are a total of 346 reserved seats for women – 60 in the NA and 66, 29, 26, and 11 in the provincial legislatures of Punjab, Sindh, K-P, and Balochistan.

Similarly, there are 10 reserved seats for minorities in the lower house. Besides, there are eight, nine and three reserved seats for minorities in the Punjab Sindh, and Balochistan assemblies.

Sunni Itthead Council, in its letter, stated that 86 independent candidates of the National Assembly had joined his party, adding that 107 independents of Punjab Assembly, 90 of K-P Assembly and nine independent members of Sindh Assembly now garnered the support of the SIC.

The SIC requested the polls supervisory body to allocate reserved seats in the national and provincial assemblies seats on these criteria.

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