Imran Khan, Bushra Bibi's indictment in Toshakhana reference deferred

NAB seeks more time to advance its arguments against former PM and his wife in case

Former prime minister Imran Khan with his wife Bushra Bibi. — X/@PTIofficial/File
Former prime minister Imran Khan with his wife Bushra Bibi. — X/@PTIofficial/File
  • Court sets January 6 as new date to indict ex-PM, his wife. 
  • Accountability court judge heard reference in Adiala Jail. 
  • NAB seeks more time for arguments against ousted premier.

An accountability court in Rawalpindi on Thursday deferred former prime minister Imran Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi’s indictment in the Toshakhana reference till Saturday (January 6).

As per the details, accountability court Judge Muhammad Bashir put off framing of charges against the founder of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and ex-first lady after National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) Prosecutor Amjad Pervaiz sought more time to advance their arguments in the case.

A five-member special prosecution team of the anti-graft watchdog is perusing the reference against the duo.  

Meanwhile, the accountability court judge set January 6 as a new date to frame charges against Khan — who was removed from office in April 2022 via a vote of no-confidence — and Bushra Bibi in the case.

The court resumed hearing the case in the premises of Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail where the PTI supremo is currently incarcerated.

What is the Toshakhana case?

Under the rules governing Toshakhana — a Persian word meaning "treasure house" — government officials can keep gifts if they have a low worth, while they must pay a dramatically reduced fee to the government for extravagant items.

The Toshakhana has been under a microscope ever since the emergence of the allegations that Imran Khan purchased the gifts he received as prime minister at throwaway rates and sold them off in the open market for staggering profits.

The 70-year-old cricketer-turned-politician was accused of misusing his 2018 to 2022 premiership to buy and sell gifts in state possession that were received during visits abroad and worth more than Rs140 million ($635,000).

The gifts included watches given by a royal family, according to government officials, who have alleged previously that Khan's aides sold them in Dubai.

The gifts included seven wristwatches, six made by watchmaker Rolex, and the most expensive a "Master Graff limited edition" valued at 85 million Pakistani rupees ($385,000).

The election commission's order had said Imran stood disqualified under Article 63(1)(p) of the Constitution.