Ashraf stopped by court to chair PCB Governing Board meeting

Karachi: PCB Chairman Zaka Ashraf, who was due to chair a meeting of the governing board on Wednesday, has been restrained from working in his present capacity by the Islamabad High Court on a petition filed against his election to the post.

In an expected development the IHC passed the order on a petition filed by former coach of the Army cricket team, Major (Retd) Ahmed Nadeem who had challenged the appointment of Ashraf in the recent PCB elections.

Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui passed the restraining order and issued notices to the Secretary Sport board, Secretary Ministry of Inter Provincial and Chairman PCB to receive their comments in a week.

"We respect the judiciary and its decisions. Our lawyers have still not received the full copy of the judgement but once we get it we intend to defend our position clearly," Zaka told reporters.

The petitioner`s lawyer, advocate Muhammad Faiz Ahmed told the court that Ashraf’s election in early May was illegal since the Board of Governors (BOG) was not properly constituted because Punjab is not represented on it.

Ahmed told the court that the respondents did not follow the proper procedure of elections therefore the appointment of Ashraf is illegal.

It was not clear whether the governing board meeting would go ahead as scheduled on Wednesday without Ashraf in the chair as the meeting is being held under the new constitution and it is due to take some important decisions and ratify others including the annual budget and expenses.

Since Ashraf was elected as Chairman for a four-year term, petitions have been filed in different courts challenging his election and the entire process.

One petition by Pakistan’s former captain Rashid Latif is due to be heard on Wednesday in the Sindh High Court.

"My petition is not against an individual but against a process and loopholes in the constitution," Latif said.

With a new government headed by the Pakistan Muslim League-N due to take oath next month, indications are that fresh elections will be held soon.