supreme court rejects petition seeking PM imran khan’s disqualification

Imran Khan

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a petition seeking disqualification of Prime Minister Imran Khan for not being Sadiq (truthful) and Ameen (righteous) and on other grounds.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar rejected the petition on the grounds that the plea — filed at a time when Khan had not been elected prime minister — had become infructuous.

The court ruled that the petition seeking Khan’s disqualification as an MNA was filed during the term of the previous National Assembly, which has now completed its tenure.

“The application has already been rendered ineffective,” observed Justice Ijazul Ahsan.

The petitioner’s counsel informed the bench that they had filed an application of a similar nature in a high court as well.

At this, the bench informed him that the petitioner had the full right to approach any other legal forum with his plea.

The court subsequently dismissed the application after the petitioner’s counsel said he was withdrawing it.

The petition was filed by Barrister Danyal Chaudhry in May last year soon after the apex court had constituted a six-member Joint Investigation Team (JIT) to probe allegations of corruption against then prime minister Nawaz Sharif, and had been pending before the court since then.

The petitioner was seeking a special oath for the JIT members to protect them from getting influenced by the speeches of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chief Imran Khan.

The petition filed through Advocate Quasain Faisal Mufti had requested the apex court to restrain Khan from activities which could influence the minds of the JIT members because his speeches and press releases could prejudice the investigation team.

It also feared that if Khan was not stopped from making political statements, it might supposedly result in derailment of democracy — a process running successfully and smoothly for a decade.

The petition had also requested the SC to order the Pakistan Electronic Media Regula­tory Authority (Pemra) not to allow broadcast by the electronic media of any material which jeopardized the sovereignty, integrity, and solidarity of Pakistan and well-being and prosperity of the people of Pakistan.

The petitioner was of the opinion that people could not afford any disturbance or turbulence at this time when the country and its people were trying to bridge the trust and peace shortage, which over the years developed due to uncontrolled waves of terrorism that had lessened after remarkable efforts by the country’s armed forces but not yet completely overcome.

It recalled that due to the PTI’s 2014 sit-in in Islamabad, the Chinese president had deferred his visit to Pakistan, resulting in exposing different projects pertaining to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor because of political uncertainty that negatively impacted the country’s financial markets. The foreign exchange reserves had also declined considerably as a result, it argued.

The petition declared that Khan was making speeches to undermine the Panama Papers case judgment and further influence the expected outcome of the JIT investigation.

In some of his statements, it said, Khan was making allegations against different institutions including but not limited to those who were bestowed upon with the responsibility to investigate the allegations as ordered by the SC.

The petition alleged that the conduct of Khan amounted to destabilizing the government and hampered the functioning of the federal government by weakening its writ and thus destabilizing the confidence of the government in making decisions in respect of national and international affairs.

Besides other things, the petition had sought disqualification of Khan for not disclosing his alleged loved child Tyrian White in his nomination papers for the general elections.