FILE PHOTO: Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan speaks with Reuters during an interview, in Lahore, Pakistan March 17, 2023. REUTERS/Akhtar Soomro/File Photo

LAHORE: An appellate tribunal established at the Lahore High Court (LHC) upheld the returning officer’s (RO) decision to reject Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) founder Imran Khan’s nomination papers from the NA-122 constituency in Lahore. A lawyer for the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) contended before the tribunal that the PTI founder had been disqualified and his proposer did not belong to the NA-122 constituency. Appellate tribunal’s Justice Tariq Nadeem announced the verdict after hearing the arguments.  Meanwhile, Justice Chaudhary Abdul Aziz of the Rawalpindi tribunal also rejected Khan’s appeal against the rejection of papers from the constituency NA-89 in Mianwali.  The judge upheld the ROs decision declaring PTI founder unable to contest the polls from the Mianwali constituency.  Khan’s nomination papers were rejected for a National Assembly constituency in Lahore and his hometown Mianwali on December 30, 2023. The former prime minister, who was disqualified for five years from holding public office in the Toshakhana case, had filed his nomination papers from Lahore’s NA-122 and Mianwali’s NA-89 constituencies for the February 8, 2024 elections. “The PTI founder has been convicted,” the RO assigned to scrutinise the nomination papers of the NA-122 constituency had said, explaining the basis of the decision. The objections, raised by PML-N’s Mian Naseer, had referred to Khan’s five-year disqualification in the Toshakhana case wherein the electoral body had found him guilty of corrupt practices under Section 167 of the Elections Act, 2017. “PTI founder’s proposer and seconder do not belong to NA-122,” the objection had added. From Toshakhana’s disqualification to having an illegitimate daughter and defaulting on Rs3.6 million social security funds, multiple objections were raised on Khan’s nomination papers filed from his NA-89 Mianwali stronghold. Concurring with the objections, the returning officer had rejected the former prime minister’s nomination papers.


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