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Pak court expected to announce verdict in Imran Khan & wife's marriage case

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NewsDrum Desk
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Islamabad, Feb 3 (PTI) A Pakistan court is expected to announce on Saturday its verdict in a case challenging the 'un-Islamic' marriage of jailed former prime minister Imran Khan to his third wife, Bushra Bibi.

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Bibi's first husband, Khawar Maneka, had filed the case, alleging that she violated the Islamic practice of observing the mandatory pause or Iddat between two marriages.

Maneka also accused his ex-wife and Khan of being in an adulterous relationship before marriage, a crime punishable by death by stoning.

Islamabad’s Senior Civil Judge Qudratullah conducted the hearing in Adiala Jail Rawalpindi where Khan has been held since September last year due to different cases.

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He concluded the hearing on Friday night after a marathon 14-hour-long hearing.

On Friday, the cross-examination of the four prosecution witnesses was completed, while Khan, 71, and Bibi, 49, submitted a joint statement, answering 13 questions.

The court rejected the defence's request to produce additional witnesses. A plea of acquittal and jurisdictional pleas were also rejected.

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Bibi declared the divorce certificate of November 14, 2017, as fabricated, claiming she completed her mandatory iddat period from April to August 2017 after receiving a verbal triple talaq (divorce) from Maneka in April 2017.

The marriage with Khan was solemnised on January 1, 2018, and Bibi reportedly exercised a lot of influence on the former premier during his days in office.

She was supposedly a faith healer and the cricketer-turned-politician used to visit her for spiritual solace before the two developed a liking that ended in their marriage.

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The court witnessed unusual scenes on the last two days of the hearing.

On Thursday, Khan and Maneka exchanged barbs and allegations. At one point they were ready to swear on the Holy Quran to prove their statements but stopped when the judge told them that by doing so they would lose the right of cross examination.

Maneka also said that his family life had been ruined by Khan due to which his one daughter faced divorce and one son entered a rehabilitation centre due to the alleged affair of their mother.

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On Friday, Maneka made serious accusations that Khan had an illicit relationship with his wife that began during the 2014 sit-in.

Tensions escalated, leading to a courtroom quarrel where physical threats were allegedly made. Khan again allegedly asked Maneka to take an oath on the Holy Quran.

Bibi, who spoke for the first time in Adiala Jail, said she was a victim of a conspiracy to humiliate her but promised not to succumb to pressure.

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Khan has already faced three convictions since 2022 when he was ousted from power.

He was arrested on August 5 when he was found guilty in the Toshakhana corruption case filed by the Election Commission of Pakistan. Since then he has been imprisoned - first in the Attock Jail and later shifted to the Adiala Jail.

Khan and his wife were sentenced to 14 years in prison on Wednesday in a corruption case for retaining expensive state gifts when he was in power. PTI SH NSA AKJ NSA NSA

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