Wednesday, August 17, 2022
A larger bench of the Islamabad High Court has been constituted to hear an appeal of the PTI against the decision of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on the prohibited funding case.
A three-member larger bench has been formed under the chairmanship of acting chief justice of the IHC, Justice Aamer Farooq, and will consist of Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb and Justice Babar Sattar.
Yesterday, the IHC heard PTI's petition against the ECP decision and ordered the matter to be handed over to a larger bench.
Justice Farooq, who was hearing the case, said that a larger bench will be formed and the case will be heard on August 18 (Thursday).
The PTI was found by the ECP to have received prohibited funding which it did not disclose. A notice was issued to the party asking it to explain why the funds should not be confiscated.
PTI has challenged the ECP's fact-finding report, with the party's lawyer contending that "it was not necessary to disclose accounts for various reasons".
"The money went from here (Centre) to provincial accounts, which was not necessary to disclose," the counsel said.
In a unanimous ruling on August 2, a three-member bench of the election commission said it has found that the PTI received prohibited funding.
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.
As per the 68-page order, the commission stated that the Imran Khan-led PTI did indeed receive funding from foreign companies and individuals, which it hid.
The ECP verdict states that the PTI received funds from 34 individuals and 351 businesses, including companies.
Thirteen unknown accounts have also come to light, said the commission in the verdict, adding that hiding accounts is a "violation" of Article 17 of the Constitution.
Moreover, the ECP found that the PTI chairperson submitted a false Nomination Form I and that the affidavit provided regarding party accounts was false.