Connect with us

Politics

Toshakhana case: IHC voids sessions court’s maintainability verdict

Published

on

  • IHC issues notice against court’s decision to reject list of witnesses.
  • Asks Federal Investigation Agency to probe judge’s alleged post.
  • Ruling comes on 8 pleas of PTI chief after arguments by both parties.

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Friday declared the sessions court’s maintainability verdict in the Toshakhana case against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan “void”.

IHC Chief Justice Amir Farooq gave the court’s ruling on eight petitions of the PTI chairman after arguments by both parties — which were completed yesterday while the judgment was reserved.

The court, however, rejected the PTI chairman’s request to transfer the case to another court and said that Additional Sessions Judge Humayun Dilawar would hear the case.

The IHC today also issued a notice against the court’s decision to reject the list of witnesses.

Regarding the district and session judge’s alleged Facebook post, the court directed the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to probe into the issue.

On October 21, 2022, the Election Commission of Pakistan maintained that the former prime minister made “false statements and incorrect declarations” about the gifts and disqualified him under Article 63(1)(p) of the Constitution.

Subsequently, the election watchdog moved the sessions court to the federal capital. It sought criminal proceedings against the PTI chief for allegedly misleading the ECP regarding gifts received from foreign dignitaries while he was in office.

The PTI chairman was indicted in the case on May 10, while his petition to declare the case inadmissible was rejected by the court.

On July 4, the IHC overturned the same ruling and directed the sessions court to hear the petitioner and decide the matter within seven days.

On July 8, ADSJ Humayun Dilawar declared the Toshakhana case against Khan as maintainable, which was again challenged in the IHC.

Meanwhile, the trial continued at the court and was about to conclude soon.

During the proceedings, Khan’s lawyers also accused the presiding judge of bias on the basis of his Facebook posts and sought the transfer of the case.

On August 2, the trial court also rejected the PTI chairman’s witnesses, stating that he failed to prove their “relevance” in the criminal proceedings against him. It was also challenged in the high court.

Explanation for rehearing

Citing the repeated adjournments sought by Khan during the duration of the trial, the bench ruled that there was while the case should be reheard, there was no need for the case to be transferred to a different court.

“The order […] shows that a number of opportunities were provided to the petitioner to address arguments but adjournments were sought, hence the matter was decided in the absence of learned counsel for the petitioner.”

“…so the learned counsel for the petitioner is correct in saying that he has been condemned unheard and it would be only appropriate to remand the matter back to the Trial Court for decision afresh,” the order mentioned.

The order mentioned that it is not essential that the matter be sent to a different judge, emphasising that remitting the matter to a different jurist can be regarded as a matter of propriety and not a principle of law.

“However, in the instant case even remanding the matter to a different court is not mandated.”

Petition dismissed by SC

The Supreme Court had earlier in the day dismissed the ex-prime minister’s petition against trial proceedings pertaining to the Toshakhana case following his withdrawal of the said plea.

The three-member bench hearing the case, led by Justice Yahya Afridi and comprising Justice Hasan Azhar Rizvi and Justice Musarat Hilali, heard Khan’s petition against the Toshakhana case.

“The trial court cannot decide on the Toshakhana case until the final decision of the High Court,” the bench ruled.

Earlier this week, the apex court had turned away Khan, asking him to await a verdict from the IHC.

“We believe that the high court can issue a better order than us. It is possible that it will give the order to stop the trial tomorrow,” he had said on Wednesday.

What is the Toshakhana case?

Under the rules governing Toshakhana — a Persian word meaning “treasure house” — government officials can keep gifts if they have a low worth, while they must pay a dramatically reduced fee to the government for extravagant items.

The Toshakhana has been under a microscope ever since the emergence of the allegations that Khan purchased the gifts he received as prime minister at throwaway rates and sold them off in the open market for staggering profits.

The 70-year-old cricketer-turned-politician was accused of misusing his 2018 to 2022 premiership to buy and sell gifts in state possession that were received during visits abroad and worth more than Rs140 million ($635,000).

The gifts included watches given by a royal family, according to government officials, who have alleged previously that Khan’s aides sold them in Dubai.

The gifts included seven wristwatches, six made by watchmaker Rolex, and the most expensive a “Master Graff limited edition” valued at 85 million Pakistani rupees ($385,000).

The election commission’s order had said Imran stood disqualified under Article 63(1)(p) of the Constitution.

Latest News

No “major breakthrough” in the opposition-led JUI-F and PTI meeting

Published

on

By

Maulana Fazalur Rehman stated that mending rifts in relationships and getting rid of resentment in an interview with the media in Islamabad with a team from the Tehreek-e-Tahafuz-e-Ayeen-e-Pakistan that paid him a visit.

While no significant progress was made at the meeting, all sides decided to keep in touch in order to plan for the future.

“A positive message,” according to the JUI-F chief, was received with open arms by the delegation. Taking a “united” stance on national issues was the primary goal of the meeting, he said.

Democracy is losing its appeal, and Pakistan’s parliament and constitution are losing their respect. In parliament, Maulana Fazalur Rehman continued, “we should have a single voice.”

Remarking on the event, National Assembly Opposition Leader Omar Ayub thanked the JUI-F leader for ‘warmly’ receiving the group.

We had a fruitful discussion in the meeting, he declared, urging the opposition parties to work with the PTI to “protect” the constitution.

Constitutional violations and a lack of a rule of law are the claims made by Omar Ayub. According to him, there was “no reason” why the police searched the PTI’s Islamabad central secretariat office.

Continue Reading

Latest News

In the instance of illegal recruitment, Pervaiz Elahi is granted bail.

Published

on

By

The earlier-reserved court ruling was delivered by LHC Judge Sultan Tanveer Ahmad on Tuesday.

LHC had filed a post-arrest bail motion, according to the former chief minister.

On October 25, 2023, Pervaiz was taken into custody by the Anti-Corruption Establishment (ACE).

From June 1 to September 18, Elahi has been arrested in a number of crimes; the most recent one was reported by the Punjab ACE on September 18.

More: Pervaiz Elahi’s condition “deteriorated” in Adiala jail; he was hurried to PIMS.

In the Punjab Assembly, Elahi illegally hired 12 people for grade 17 positions, according to information provided by an ACE representative.

In the provincial assembly, the candidates were chosen through record-altering.

Continue Reading

Latest News

The bail petition of Parvez Elahi in the Jinnah House attack case has been rejected by the ATC.

Published

on

By

A bail application filed by Chaudhry Parvez Elahi, a leader of the Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (PTI) party, in the Jinnah House attack case has been rejected by an Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) on the grounds of prematurity.

ATC Judge Arshad Javed announced the decision during today’s hearing.

The counsel representing Parvez Elahi contended that there was a significant likelihood of his client being arrested in relation to the Jinnah House attack case. It was stated that the ex-Chief Minister had previously been held in custody on judicial remand in other cases.

The petitioner requested the court to authorise the release of Parvez Elahi on bail in the Jinnah House attack case.

Nevertheless, the prosecution argued that the bail petition did not meet the necessary legal criteria, emphasising that Parvez Elahi had not been apprehended in connection with the case.

Considering these considerations, the court rejected Parvez Elahi’s request for release, stating that it was premature since he had not been arrested in the Jinnah House attack case.

Continue Reading

Trending