ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has strongly rejected any foul play in receiving Toshakhana gifts, dubbing the Toshakhana case against him as “misleading” and “false” and requesting the electoral body to dismiss it forthwith.
In his 60-page reply submitted to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) through his counsel and PTI Senator Barrister Ali Zafar, Mr Khan disclosed that some 329 official gifts were received when the PTI was in federal government. He further stated that out of these gifts, 58 were received by him and his wife, and only 14 of these gifts were valued more than Rs 14,000 each.
The former PM further maintained that all the details of the gifts he lawfully bought from Toshakhana were duly declared at the relevant forums including the tax returns (filed with the Federal Board of Revenue – FBR) and the wealth statements (filed with the ECP).
A five-member ECP bench headed by Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja and comprising Nisar Ahmed Durrani, Shah Muhammad Jatoi, Babar Bharwana, and former Justice Ikramullah Khan heard the case on Wednesday.
In the proceedings, defence lawyers, Barrister Ali Zafar and Barrister GoharAli Khan represented the PTI chief.
Zafar argued that the ECP did not have any authority to hear this case under Article 62(1)(f) of the Constitution.
He maintained that the authority to hear cases under this article was vested in the superior judiciary.
Article 62 (1)(f) provides that a person shall not be qualified to be elected or chosen as a member of Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) unless he is “sagacious, righteous and non-profligate and honest and ameen.”
The CEC asked the defence lawyer to move a separate petition if he wanted to challenge the maintainability of the case.
The case was then adjourned till September 19.
Speaking to the media outside the ECP, Mohsin Ranjha from Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), the petitioner in Toshakhana case, alleged that Khan bought “expensive” official gifts from Toshakhana and his disqualification was “imminent” in this case.
During the previous hearing of this case on August 29, the ECP directed the PTI chairman to submit his reply in Toshakhana case by September 7.
At that time, Gohar Khan, the counsel for the PTI chairman, appeared before the ECP and requested to be granted time to file a reply in the case due to the unavailability of Zafar, the lead counsel.
The bench directed the defence side to file a reply by September 7 and adjourned the case till this date.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022