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Ruling reserved on plea seeking Imran’s removal as PTI chief

IHC rejects PTI’s request tostop FIA actions in prohibited-funding case

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Tuesday reserved its judgment on a petition seeking the removal of former prime minister Imran Khan as the head of his party – the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) – following his disqualification in the Toshakhana reference.

Petitioner Muhammad Afaq appeared before the ECP and pleaded that after Imran Khan’s disqualification from the NA-95 constituency, he (Imran) could not head a political party under the Political Parties Order (PPO) and its rules.

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He requested the electoral watchdog to remove Khan as PTI chairman and issue directives for the nomination of a new party head.

Afaq, however, maintained that he was ready to withdraw his application if the ECP considers Imran Khan sadiq and ameen (honest and righteous).

Separately, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday rejected a PTI request to stop the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA)’s actions after the ECP decision in the prohibited funding case.

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A larger bench of IHC headed by Chief Justice Aamer Farooq and comprising Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb and Justice Baber Sattar heard the case.

CJ Aamer Farooq remarked that what would be the act of the ECP if it received evidence of foreign aid to the party.

What the petitioner wanted in the case, he asked, and said that the federal government was yet to send the reference to the apex court.

Barrister Anwar Mansoor, the PTI’s lawyer, contended that the ECP had no authority to send the matter to the federal government, adding that the ECP had sent the matter to the federal government regarding the party dissolution. He said that opening of cases on the basis of the ECP decision was illegal.

Anwar Mansoor said that there was a difference in prohibited funding and foreign aid. He prayed the court to conduct hearing on a daily basis.

The FIA had registered dozens of FIRs on the basis of the ECP verdict, he said.

The bench rejected the PTI’s request to stop the FIA’s action into the matter and remarked that it was a separate issue. The court adjourned further hearing till Jan 10.


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