• Khurram Dastgir says government will move apex court against Imran Khan. 
  • In Geo News programme, minister says competent authority has given its ruling against Imran Khan.
  • PTI’s lawyer says Imran Khan’s stand will be vindicated in coming days.

ISLAMABAD: Federal Power Minister Khurram Dastgir has signalled that the federal government will file a reference against PTI Chairperson Imran Khan.

Speaking on Geo News programme ‘Capital Talk‘, the minister recalled that in the Hanif Abbasi case, the Supreme Court of Pakistan did not give its verdict about Imran Khan and wrote that no competent authority has determined facts about him.

“But now the competent authority which is the ECP has given its viewpoint about Imran Khan,” he said.

Giving a unanimous verdict on Tuesday, the ECP said it has found that the PTI received prohibited funding. The ECP verdict said that the PTI received funds from 34 individuals and 351 businesses, including companies. The commission said the PTI accepted donations coming from America, Australia, Canada and the UAE.

The case was earlier referred to as the “foreign funding” case, but later the election commission accepted the PTI’s plea to refer to it as the “prohibited funding” case.

Referring to the ECP’s show-cause notice issued to the PTI, the power minister stressed the election commission’s action was still pending against Imran Khan.

Dastgir said Khan should be disqualified for life by the same benchmark with which the apex court disqualified PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif through what he referred to as “an illegal and unjustified verdict”.

PTI lawyer Ahmed Owais said that Imran Khan’s and the PTI’s stance will stand vindicated in the coming days.

ECP issues show-cause notice to PTI

The ECP, in its show-cause notice, demanded an explanation from the PTI as to why its funds shouldn’t be frozen.

ECP sources said that the body issues show-cause notices to a party under the Political Party Order, 2002, and gives it a chance to explain itself and present its case. Through the move, the party gets a chance to come clean before its assets are frozen.

The party usually has 7-14 days to submit its response before the ECP. The sources said the ECP may reverse its ruling if the party successfully persuades the commission, through documentary evidence, that it has not received prohibited funding. 

PTI decides to challenge ECP ruling

The PTI has decided to challenge the ECP ruling with all political and legal means as former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that the party would challenge the verdict in court.

The PTI leader said that the party met all the criteria and submitted all the evidence to come clean. He said the verdict proved that there was no foreign funding case however, the media trial going on for years has finally come to an end today.

Qureshi said that the PTI has objections against the election commission for not being impartial. “We provided everything that the commission asked us to, however, it did not seek any evidence from the other parties,” he added.

“We demand action against those parties that received funding from former Al-Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden and Libya. They should also be held accountable,” he said.

The former foreign minister added that the coalition government had wished that the PTI should be nullified. However, “God once again made Imran Khan victorious and the government had again embarrassed itself”, he said.

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