Toshakhana Case : The Pakistani election commission judged Imran Khan guilty of “corrupt actions,” and it was unanimously agreed that he would no longer be eligible to hold office in the legislature.
Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party strongly disagreed with Friday’s choice and urged supporters to protest.
The PTI legal team’s Faisal Fareed Chaudhry told Al Jazeera that they were awaiting the whole verdict before submitting an appeal to the Islamabad High Court. He further stated that they wanted to question the commission’s legitimacy in rendering such a decision. We will challenge their legitimacy to issue this judgment as well as their jurisdiction, he proclaimed.
A Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PMLN) member sued Khan in August, claiming that the former prime minister had bought gifts from the official gift repository, commonly known as Toshakhana, but had omitted to disclose the assets in the statements he had given to the commission.
Fawad Chaudhry, the leader of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), addressed the media after the verdict and called the commission’s judgment “embarrassing” and a “slap in the face” to the Pakistani people.
It is not just Imran Khan who gets criticized for this choice. The Pakistani people and the constitution are being attacked, he said. Khan, who was dismissed from his job in April after a no-confidence vote in the parliament, has accused the committee of bias and in particular its head, Sikandar Sultan Raja, of harboring hostility toward him and his party.
After his government was overthrown, Khan organized rallies around the country to demand early elections. His narrative has helped him amass a considerable following, in part due to the PTI’s resounding success in the by-elections that were held in July and October.
The Toshakhana scandal first surfaced last year when it was discovered that Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi bought items from the Toshakhana and then sold them on the market for less money.
When it came to the contents of the gifts given to Khan, the PTI, which was in power at the time, had initially indicated that it was hesitant to share them because it could jeopardize Pakistan’s diplomatic relations.
Founded in the 1970s, the gift repository is a branch of government that keeps gifts that foreign dignitaries and heads of state have given to legislators, governors, and other top officials and bureaucrats.
Regulations of Toshakhana provide that all donations must be accepted by the department. Nevertheless, they can be bought at a later time. Many individuals feel that selling gifts is unethical and immoral, even if it is not outright forbidden.
58 boxes containing a range of goods were given to the former prime minister over the course of his administration, according to the charge brought against Khan.
The former prime minister was required by law to declare all of his assets, including those of his wife and dependents, to the commission at the end of each fiscal year, according to Mohsin Nawaz Ranjha, a PMLN petitioner.
The Pakistani constitution forbade Khan from ever again seeking election to the House of Representatives because, according to the citation, doing so would have made him appear “dishonest.”
Khan was accused of “deliberately” hiding the gifts he had bought from Toshakhana, but he later acknowledged selling them without alerting the commission.
When it declared PLMN leader and former prime minister Nawaz Sharif to be “dishonest” five years ago, the Supreme Court created history, ousting him from office and permanently banning him from parliamentary politics.
From August 2018 to April 2022, when he was forced to resign by a vote of no-confidence, Pakistani politician and former cricketer Imran Ahmed Khan Niazi served as the 22nd prime minister of the nation. He is the leader of and the founder of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), one of the largest political parties in the country.
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