Word “Father” is not used in declaration given Imran Khan in Tyrian case: IHC
IHC adjourns Imran Khan’s disqualification case till tomorrow
March 21, 2023 12:14 PM
A larger bench of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday adjourned the hearing of the disqualification case against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan on account of Tyrian White’s parental issue till Wednesday.
During the course of proceedings, Chief Justice Aamer Farooq, who headed the bench comprising Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani and Justice Arbab Muhammad Tahir, questioned whether Imran Khan was still a public office holder and whether merely winning National Assembly seats made someone a public office holder.
Imran Khan’s lawyer Salman Akram Raja said there was a question of the admissibility of the petition as well as the court’s jurisdiction.
The chief justice remarked that the court was not asking him (lawyer) to give arguments on the merits of the case. “If one goes go on the merits then it is a two-minute case.”
The petitioner’s lawyer Hamid Shah said when the court had issued the notice, Imran Khan should have submitted a reply on the merits, but he instead raised five objections on the plea. The PTI’s chief had adopted the stance that he was no more a member of the National Assembly, he added.
He said Imran Khan had been disqualified by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in the Toshakhana case adjudging the National Assembly constituency from where he was elected in the 2018 general election, vacant. However, he had challenged the ECP’s decision in the court, which stayed the by-elections in said constituency.
Hamid Shah said the ECP had notified Imran Khan’s success from another constituency.
The chief justice said despite all that Imran Khan was no longer an MNA from that seat. He asked the lawyers to give their arguments on following questions: What was the status as he had not oath from that constituency and whether the head of a political party was a public office holder.
An application for corrupt practices in the election could be filed in the Election Tribunal but it was not the case in the instant case, he added.
Chief Justice Aamer Farooq said the court would first decide about the admissibility of the case and would proceed further.
The petitioner’s lawyer said that there was a decision of the American court regarding Imran Khan. The PTI chief had submitted an affidavit in the American court.
The chief justice observed that it was not an affidavit but a declaration, which was signed by an oath commissioner in Pakistan.
The petitioner’s lawyer claimed that Imran Khan as a father had given the declaration to hand over the guardianship of “his daughter”.
Justice Kayani said the word “father” was not used anywhere in that declaration.
The chief justice questioned what would be the fate of the petition if the National Assembly was dissolved today.
He observed that Faisal Vawda’s case was also based on a false affidavit.
The petitioner’s lawyer said the circumstances and events were different in the Faisal Vawda case as he had gone to the Supreme Court and tendered an apology.
Chief Justice Amir Farooq asked if Imran Khan sought forgiveness, then what would be the position. Whether the disqualification would be for life if the affidavit proved to be false. The IHC had disqualified Khawaja Asif but the Supreme Court annulled the decision, he added.
Justice Kayani asked whether it was possible for a person to find out much later that he had a child, and whether a person could be disqualified on that basis.
The chief justice questioned whether an adopted child was to be disclosed by a person among his dependents.