Islamabad: Islamabad local court granted relief to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan in the Toshakhana case as he skipped the proceedings once again.
The case is related to charges of corrupt practices concerning the state gift depository, which Khan denies. In October 2020, Khan was barred from holding public office after the Election Commission of Pakistan found him guilty of unlawfully selling gifts from foreign dignitaries and heads of state.
Recently, a trial court had issued an arrest warrant for the PTI chief due to his continuous absence, despite summons for indictment in the case. However, the order of arrest was canceled a few days later due to PTI’s insistence that Khan’s life was in danger and he needed security.
At the outset of the hearing, Khan’s lawyers filed a request for exemption from the day’s hearing, citing the ongoing strike at the Islamabad Bar. However, the Election Commission of Pakistan’s lawyer argued that Imran Khan was not part of the lawyers’ strike and emphasized that the presence of the suspect in the courtroom was required.
Khan’s lawyer, Khawaja Harris, responded by saying that Imran Khan’s life was in danger, and the government had withdrawn security from him. Harris argued that an appearance in court could also be made through a video link.
After the arguments of the lawyers, the judge asked the parties to help the court decide on the hearing through joint consultation. PTI chief’s lawyer Faisal Chaudhry suggested that the next hearing of the Toshakhana case should be held after Ramadan.
The judge instructed the concerned parties to consult and later adjourned further proceedings till April 29, accepting Imran Khan’s request for exemption from the day’s attendance.
Apart from this, a plea has also been filed on behalf of Imran Khan challenging the admissibility of the Toshakhana case, and arguments for it will be given at the next hearing. The Toshakhana case is just one of the many legal battles Khan has been embroiled in recent years.
The PTI leader has often accused the opposition parties of politically motivated cases against him, calling them an attempt to distract him from his governance duties. Nonetheless, Khan has maintained that he will face all charges and prove his innocence. The Toshakhana case remains ongoing, and it remains to be seen how the court proceedings will unfold in the coming weeks.