Islamabad: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf faces possible disqualification in Pakistan's upcoming polls as a company co-owned by him has been declared a defaulter by authorities, according to a media report on Sunday.
Under existing rules, any person declared a defaulter in business dealings is barred from contesting elections. Fairwin Enterprises, which was registered by Ashraf and two partners with the registrar of Islamabad Capital Territory in August 1986, has been declared a defaulter by the Capital Development Authority.
The firm had bought a commercial plot in Islamabad that was developed by Ashraf and his partners. Over a dozen shops and 10 flats were built on the plot and sold to 18 buyers, The Express Tribune quoted official documents as saying.
In November 1988, the firm sold the plot to another party without clearing dues of Rs 2.06 million owed to CDA. The CDA sent several notices to the company but failed to get any response until 1994, when the plot was sealed. When the new owners of the plot were made aware of the arrears, they contacted Fairwin Enterprises and requested it to pay the dues but to no avail, the report said.
Facing fears of eviction by CDA, the new owners recently approached the Supreme Court. CDA Chairman Syed Tahir Shahbaz was axed from his position after he told the Supreme Court's human rights cell that Ashraf's company was a defaulter.
The premier then appointed Islamabad's Chief Election Commissioner Tariq Mahmood Pirzada as the new CDA Chairman. The human rights cell of the apex court has directed Pirzada to submit a report on the issue.
If proven guilty of default, Ashraf faces disqualification under provisions of the Representation of Peoples Act of 1976. The Pakistan People's Party-led government headed by Ashraf completed its five-year term on Saturday and the next general election is expected to be held sometime in May.