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ISLAMABAD: Former ruling party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Wednesday once again denied having received any funding from prohibited foreign sources, contending that all the funds it received from abroad Pakistani donors were legal.

A three-member ECP bench led by Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja, and comprising of Nisar Ahmed Durrani and Shah Muhammad Jatoi heard Foreign Funding Case related to PTI.

The former ruling party’s counsel Anwar Mansoor Khan initiated his arguments in the case.

Speaking before the bench, he said, PTI received lawful funding from overseas Pakistanis and all the record of the related transactions was well maintained by PTI’s relevant offices.

“There is nothing that is unaccounted for. The finances are properly audited. Everything is in good hands,” Khan, the former attorney general for Pakistan (AGP), stated.

He said receiving funds from any foreign company is prohibited under the law but the law allows receiving funds/contributions from local companies.

The PTI counsel denied the allegation levelled by Akbar Sher Babar, the petitioner against PTI in the case, that former ruling party received funding from an Indian national.

“If any Pakistani Hindu acquires dual-nationality, does that mean he has become foreigner? This is totally far from reality,” he remarked, demanding of Babar to provide solid proof of his allegations instead of making “wild allegations.”

The counsel said the Scrutiny Committee that probed PTI’s accounts in Foreign Funding Case misinterpreted the related provisions of Political Parties Order 2002 regarding foreign funding.

He said PTI’s certain offices were not operational at the moment due to the present political situation in the country. He sought time from the bench to provide additional information in the case. The bench accepted the request and adjourned the case till April 19.

Speaking outside the ECP after the case hearing, PTI leader Farrukh Habib said, the “masters of Akbar Babar who are running this imported government would be exposed.”

He continued, “This imported government has been implanted on Pakistanis to follow the ‘do more’ agenda of the imperialist powers. Those powers and their puppets would be exposed. They will have nowhere to run,” he deplored.

He said PTI submitted all the record of its 40,000 donors in Foreign Funding Case. Habib demanded of the ECP to ensure that Scrutiny Committee related to Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) complete its probe and furnish its report before the electoral body at the earliest.

Speaking to media, Babar said the decision on Foreign Funding Case would be reserved this week. “Noose is tightening around them (PTI). They will face the music,” he said.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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