The Supreme Court Wednesday dismissed a petition of MQM-P seeking postponement of Sindh local government elections and directed the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to proceed with the second phase of the elections as per the schedule announced last month. A three-member SC bench – comprising Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah and Justice Ayesha A Malik – heard the petition filed by MQM’s Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui & others against the delimitation of constituencies for the local bodies election. The court directed the MQM-P to approach the relevant forum if it wanted to delay the second phase of elections. The court noted that the constitutional points that were not raised by the petitioner in the Sindh High Court could not be raised with the Supreme Court. It was referring to the MQM-P’s objections to Section 10(1) of the Sindh Local Government Act (SLGA), which the MQM had reportedly not raised with the Sindh High Court. Wrapping up a separate plea filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) for holding the polls in line with the schedule, the chief justice said the elections would be held on time come what may. Hafiz Naeem Ur Rehman Jamaat-e-Islami Karachi Chief also requested the bench not to pass any order which could delay the LG elections in Karachi. Salahuddin Ahmed counsel representing the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf also supported the timely LG elections. The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) citing heavy rains and other reasons had postponed the second phase of the local bodies’ elections to August 28 which was originally scheduled to take place on July 24. The chief justice said it became clear that the delimitation of constituencies was carried out by ECP and the local administration. Assistant Attorney General (AAG) maintained that the Sindh government had framed the guidelines of delimitation in light of Supreme Court’s orders. The chief justice noted that the SC could not rule on such points that were raised before the Sindh High Court (SHC). Advocate Khalid Jawed Khan counsel for the unopposed elected representatives appeared in the court and said that the number of union committees was decided by the provincial government in Punjab and KP while the Election Commission held delimitation of constituencies in other provinces. Demarcation and delimitation of constituencies were done by taking into account factors other than population, he added. He said that the vote for the prime minister was equal whether the constituency of the National Assembly was 400,000 or 1000,000. The difference in the proportion of votes varied in each constituency from local government election to the National Assembly, he added. The chief justice asked why were the points raised by MQM not taken up in the Sindh High Court. He said that a few days before the polling, a request was made to stop the first phase of the election. He said that how Supreme Court could consider new points in appeal. Khalid Jawed Khan said that the Constitution also did not give the Election Commission authority to change the number of constituencies. The number of constituencies was determined by the constitution and by law, he added. Advocate General Sindh said that MQM did not approach the delimitation authority. The Election Commission and the provincial government work together, he added. He said several delimitations of constituencies had been changed on the instructions of the Election Commission adding that the voters did not care about the delimitation. He said the problem of political parties was only the election of mayor and asked who knew from which party the mayor would be elected.