P L D 1998 LAHORE 491




Per Ihsan-ul-Haq Chaudhry, J.

Constitution of Pakistan (1973) Arts. 219 & 51(3) Chap. IV
Ss 12 to 35 & S. 3(XXVIII) of Punjab Local Government Ordinance (VI of 1979) –

The electoral list so prepared under the Act is immune from challenge as per section 29.   This is one of the most important provisions and clearly excludes the possibility of setting aside the electoral roll at least in the absence of direct challenge and except in the manner provided under this Act.

The term ‘official publication’ has been defined in Words and Phrases, Permanent Edition, Volume 29-A as under  ;-

“Official Publication :

Papers embraced I exhibit, which were work of persons in employment of Government in course of performance of duties of their positions, were “official papers” and the exhibit which was published by Government printing office upon order of the Senate was an “official publication” evidencing and ‘official record’, within Civil Procedure Rule providing that authenticity of an official record may be evidenced by an official publication thereof. U,.S. v. Aluminum Co. of America, D.C.N.Y.1.F.R.D.71.75″

While in Black’s Law Dictionary the word ‘publish’ has been assigned following meanings : –


To make public; to circulate; to make known to people in general.  To utter to present (e.g, a forged instrument) for payment.  To declare or assert, directly or indirectly, by words or actions, that a forged instrument is genuine.  An Advising of the public or making known of something to the public for a purpose. ‘Publication'”

Therefore, holding of fresh census in the country is not a condition precedent for holding of general elections”.

The  census is carried out basically for formulating the policies and planning future needs of the nation in all walks of life such as housing, population, economy, healh and education etc.  In this behalf, we may refer to the Wharton’s Law Lexicon, Fourteenth Edition, which defined census as under :-

“Census.  A numbering of he people.  It formally took place place in thecentury once in every 10 years.  The first was taken in 1801 under 41 Geo 3, C, 15; that of 1891 on Sunday 5th April, 1891, under the Census Act, 1890 and that of 1911 under the Census (Great Britain) Act, 1910 and the Census (Ireland) Act, 1910.  The Census Act, 1920 provides that a Census may be taken, if so directed by an order in Council, at any time, provided that five years have elapsed since the last Census, and provided that a draft order has been laid before Parliament for 20 days.  The early Census Acts only got at the numbers, occupations, etc, by a series of questions to overseers, clergymen, etc,.  The Act 1840 was the first to get at the same, etc, Of every person, in every house.  The Act makes it penal for a person employed in the Census to communicate without lawful authority, any information acquired in the course of his employment.

Population, for a particular purpose, is sometimes expressly directed to be ascertained by the last published census for the time being.

“Census”  — A numbering of the population of a country and bringing them under various headings for the purpose of statistical reference. “

It is clear from above that Legislature has provided a comprehensive procedure and machinery for updating the electoral rolls.  For this reasons also the Census is not a condition precedent for the preparation ro revision of the electoral rolls.  There is no inter dependence of elecgtoral rolls and census. [p. 499, 500, 501 & 502] A,B,C,D,E & F.

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