GUJRANWALA: A milk seller in Punjab’s Gujranwala district was declared ineligible to contest local body polls as he was selling milk on a price higher than that approved by the provincial government.
The returning officer rejected the nomination papers of the milk seller, Malik Tariq, an aspiring candidate for General Councillor seat in Gujranwala’s Union Council 58, on the pretext that he was committing the ‘crime’ of robbing people of the area by selling milk at a higher price.
Shocked by the rejection of his nomination papers, Tariq fainted on the spot and was taken to the hospital. He was later discharged after provision of medical treatment.
The returning officer, Ateeq-ur-Rehman, while talking to DawnNews said that the milk seller was selling milk at Rs 80 per litre defying the Punjab government orders of selling it at Rs60 per litre and confessed his crime before him.
“I also work as a price control magistrate for the district and when I asked him as to what price he is charging for a litre of milk, he said Rs80 and such people shall not be allowed to take part in polls,” said Ateeq-ur-Rehman, while defending his decision.
Former secretary Election Commission of Pakistan, Kunwar Dilshad Ahmed, while commenting on the incident said “rejecting nomination papers on such a pretext is illegal and ECP must take notice of the incident”.
“Is every milk seller in Gujranwala selling milk on Rs60?” asked Dilshad.
The former ECP official said that the aspiring candidate can seek legal help over the issue and can challenge the returning officer’s decision in a court.
Local body elections in Punjab and Sindh will be held in two phases with the first phase scheduled for October 31 and the second to be held on November 19.