The 18th constitutional amendment severely restricts the president’s ability to establish governor’s rule in a province, as Parliament and the provincial legislature can do so.
In the wake of the Chief Minister Punjab Election Case, there has been talk of imposing governor’s control in Punjab.
Clause 1 of Article 232 indicates the president may declare a state of emergency if war, external invasion, or internal disturbances beyond the authority of a provincial administration threaten Pakistan’s security.
A proviso requires a provincial assembly resolution for emergency declarations due to internal disturbances beyond a provincial government’s control.
If the president acts alone, the emergency proclamation must be approved by both houses of parliament within 10 days.
National Assembly will pass this resolution. The term “must” in the proviso requires passage by both houses.
Under Article 233, which provides power to suspend fundamental rights, etc., during emergency period, while a proclamation of emergency is in force, the president may by order declare that the right to move any court for the enforcement of such fundamental rights and any proceeding in any court which is for the enforcement, or involves the determination of any question as to the infringement, of any of the rights so specified shall remain suspended for the period.
Every order under this Article must be approved by both Houses of Parliament.
In event of constitutional failure in a province, the president might issue a proclamation under a separate article.
Article 234 states that if the president, upon receiving a report from a province’s governor, is satisfied that the province’s government cannot be carried out in accordance with the constitution, he may, or if a resolution in this behalf is passed by each House separately, assume to himself, or direct the governor of the province to assume on behalf of the president, all or any of the province’s functions.
Such a proclamation shall be laid before a joint sitting and shall cease to be in effect after two months unless approved by resolution of the joint session before the expiration of that period and may be extended for a further period not exceeding two months at a time; but it shall not remain in force for more than six months.