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Imran Khan's party could be banned if he is convicted in cases pending against him: Reports

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NewsDrum Desk
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Islamabad, Jan 28 (PTI) Jailed Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party could be banned if its founder and former prime minister and other top brass are convicted in the cases relating to the May 9 violent incidents and violation of the Secrets Act in the cipher case, according to a media reports on Sunday.

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The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) after several years of probing into the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party’s funding unanimously declared that the party had received “prohibited funding” in August 2003.

This created an opportunity for the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) government led by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) to dissolve the party. Khan was however disqualified from Parliament, Geo News reported.

The cipher case pertains to a piece of paper, purported to be a diplomatic cable -- the cipher -- that Khan had waved at a public rally on March 27, 2022, and naming the US, had claimed that it was ‘evidence’ of an “international conspiracy” to topple his government.

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On May 9, 2023, violent protests erupted after the arrest of Khan by paramilitary Rangers in Islamabad. Over 20 military installations and state buildings, including the army headquarters in Rawalpindi, were damaged or torched in the violent protests that followed Khan's arrest in a corruption case.

The party ran into trouble after the May 9 violence by its supporters. Hundreds of rioters were arrested in the days after the attack and booked on various charges.

Highly placed sources that had been part of the previous Shehbaz Sharif government told The News on Saturday that the ECP verdict had provided an occasion for the PDM government of the time to raise the question before the Supreme Court of Pakistan to declare the PTI a banned entity but the government opted to agitate the matter later at an appropriate time.

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Sources that had been part of the previous Shehbaz Sharif government on Saturday said the ECP verdict had provided an occasion for the PDM government of the time to raise the question before the Supreme Court of Pakistan to declare the PTI a banned entity but the government opted to agitate the matter later at an appropriate time.

Senator Azam Nazir Tarrar, the law and justice minister of the previous government and leader of the house in the Senate, said the government was struggling to save the country from default and opted to delay the matter.

Tarrar said the PTI had defied several laws under the Elections Act of 2017, and committed offences which, once the government decided to agitate regarding the PTI’s lawful existence, could be conveniently decided by the apex court.

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To a query, Tarrar said the caretaker government could also knock on the doors of the highest court for the purpose but the next government would have to consider it with seriousness.

Sources said disbanding the PTI would become probable after a verdict is handed to the PTI founder and other leadership currently involved in under-trial cases.

None of the PTI leaders including the opposition leader in the Senate Shahzad Waseem was available for comments, despite repeated efforts to reach them, the report said. PTI PY PY PY

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