PML-Q Punjab Vice President Rai Mansab Ali Khan Thursday submitted a reply to the Election Commission (ECP) in PML-Q’s internal elections case. PML-Q President Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain had approached the Commission against the decision of the party’s Central Working Committee to remove him as party chief after he asked his party MPAs not to vote in favor of Elahi during the run-off election for the Punjab chief minister. Rai Mansab said Shujaat and the party General Secretary Tariq Bashir Cheema were removed as per the party constitution. Chaudhry Shujaat’s removal as party head was unavoidable, as he was unable to take decisions due to his deteriorating health, he said. He claimed that Cheema tried to hijack the party and Shujaat was probably not even aware of that. He requested the Commission to allow the party to proceed with the internal elections as per the constitution of PML-Q. Mansab maintained that election disputes could only be resolved through tribunals. He further said that Salik Hussain, Shujaat’s son, was not even a member of PML-Q. Mansab asked the ECP to dismiss Shujaat’s petition. Last month, the Central Executive Committee of PML-Q met in Lahore to pave way for removal of Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain as the party head. The meeting was called on the instruction of PML-Q Punjab President and Punjab Chief Minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi who sided with the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) along with nine MPAs of the party, against the instruction of party chief Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain. PML-Q’s Senator Kamil Ali Agha told reporters after the meeting that the central executive committee has removed Tariq Bashir Cheema as the party secretary general. He also said that Shujaat’s health was affecting his political decisions and the party has decided to remove him as president. According to Agha, intra-party election will be held after Muharram. Following this, Shujaat approached the ECP to challenge the central executive committee’s decision. On August 5, the Commission issued a stay order on Shujaat’s petition and declared that Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain was still the party head of the Pakistan Muslim League-Q. It also canceled PMLQ’s intraparty election announced by Shujaat’s rivals in the party. The ECP issued notices to the parties, canceling the schedule for the intraparty election. The ECP ruled that until it gives a verdict on the petition, Tariq Bashir Cheema will remain PMLQ secretary and Shujaat the party head.