ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan urged the Islamabad High Court (IHC) to hold that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP)’s order disqualifying him in the Toshakhana reference under Article 63(1) (p) of the constitution is against the settled principles of law, misconceived and set it aside.

Imran Khan on Saturday filed a petition in the IHC through Barrister Ali Zafar praying to suspend the operation of the impugned order dated 21-10-22 and restrain further proceeding by the ECP.

The PTI chief had pleaded that his petition be heard today (Saturday). However, the IHC stated that the petition would be heard on Monday, not today.

The IHC Assistant Registrar, Asad Khan, raised objections over the petition. The IHC office maintained that Imran Khan had not provided proper biometrics, further adding that uncertified documents had been attached to the petition. The assistant registrar observed that the matter was not urgent and did not need to be dealt with on the same day.

The IHC was further asked to declare that the ECP could not have exercised the jurisdiction to decide any questions of “corrupt practice or disqualification” under Section 137 read with Section 232 of the Election Act, 2017. The ECP, a day ago, disqualified former premier Imran Khan under Article 63(1) (p).

He submitted that the impugned order is arbitrary, capricious, whimsical, based on no evidence, contrary to record and ultra vires the jurisdiction of the ECP; hence, illegal and null and void.

We will contest ECP’s verdict in Islamabad High Court: Asad Umar

Ali Zafar pleaded that his client had filed the Statement of Assets and Liabilities for 2018, 2019 till 2021. If the ECP had any objection to any of the Statement of Assets and Liabilities filed by him or wanted any clarifications or additional details, under Section 137 (4) the ECP could do so in 120 days. The ECP never raised any query or objection, etc., as required by Section 137 (4) within 120 days.

The petitioner stated that he also filed Income Tax Returns in which the details of the gifts and all the transactions relating to the assets and liabilities of the petitioner had been disclosed. The petitioner also stated that the Income Tax authorities had accepted the returns without any objections. The ECP had not raised any objection or sought any clarification, etc., from the petitioner in respect of the Statement of Assets and Liabilities filed by the petitioner from the year 2019 within 120 days as required by Section 137. The ECP during the course of the proceeding never asked for more details or require any further evidence or documents from the petitioner.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022


Comments are closed.