Edited by Sabyasachi Dasgupta | Updated: June 20, 2012 02:50 IST
WHAT DID THE COURT DECIDE? Pakistan's Supreme Court ruled that Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani is disqualified from office after failing to open a corruption case against the country's president. Both are members of the ruling Pakistan People's Party. In its order, the court said, "the president of Pakistan is required to take necessary steps under the constitution to ensure continuation of the democratic process." Just hours later, Pakistan's election commission issued a formal notice disqualifying Mr Gilani as a member of parliament, backdating the disqualification to the date of his conviction - April 26.
FALLOUT OF THE COURT'S DECISION: President Asif Ali Zardari cancelled his two-day visit from tomorrow to Russia to attend a meeting of International Economic Forum the country. A meeting of the central leadership of the PPP, jointly chaired by President Zardari and his son, party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, decided to accept the apex court's ruling against Mr Gilani, party sources said. The PPP leadership also held separate meetings with the members of the ruling coalition.
THE NEXT PRIME MINISTER? As a coalition meeting broke up late Tuesday, some media reports said Makhdoom Shahabuddin, the textile minister, was emerging as a consensus candidate as the next Prime Minister. Federal ministers Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar and Khursheed Shah are also among those whose names are doing the rounds.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR THE GOVERNMENT? With the PPP-led coalition's majority in parliament, it may be able to replace Mr Gilani and stay in office until elections that must be held by early next year. Resisting the court could trigger a constitutional crisis. A session of the National Assembly or lower house of Parliament is likely to be convened on Wednesday for the formal election of a new PM.
INTERNATIONAL REPERCUSSIONS: The government's attention has been focused for months on dealing with this developing political crisis, so it has not had the time or political will to tackle weighty issues such as Taliban reconciliation. As it fights for its political future, the PPP is also unlikely to want to take the unpopular position of re-opening supply lines to US and NATO troops in Afghanistan.
Become friends with your favourite NDTV people and shows. Start now »