Election Commission of Pakistan issues arrest warrant against Imran Khan

Pakistan Election Commission issues non-bailable arrest warrant against Imran Khan

Opposition Leader in National Assembly (NA) Khurshid Shah on Thursday has advised Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chief Imran Khan to appear in Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in the next hearing.

He said Imran Khan did not declare his London flat in his tax returns and nomination papers for elections.

According to PTI Spokesperson Naeemul Haq, the party is set to challenge the warrants in the Islamabad High Court (IHC), reported Pakistan media. He said the decision was hastily announced without determining the jurisdictions. The commission, however, declared on August 10 that it had the legal right to hear the contempt case and then issued a formal show-cause notice to him asking for submission of a reply by August 23.

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The chief election commissioner, heading a five-member bench, ordered to produce the PTI chief before the court after arrest in the next hearing fixed for Oct 26.

The IHC has yet to decide on Imran's petition challenging the power of the top poll body to prosecute a contempt case.

In his written reply during last hearing on Monday, Imran Khan said that he had filed an apology through his lawyer Saqlain Haider, adding that he had never opposed the apology. Later, when the PTI chief did not submit any response, the ECP issued a second show-cause notice to him on August 24.

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On September 14, the ECP had issued bailable warrants against Imran to ensure his presence in the case.

The documents - detailing bank transactions in connection with Khan's assets and accounts of his offshore company, Niazi Services Ltd - are not verified and have been submitted very late in the case, Abbasi argued in his petition, submitted separately with his reply in the case.

However, the PTI approached the IHC which, on September 20, suspended the bailable arrest warrants.

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