Election Commission of Pakistan issues non-bailable arrest warrants for Imran Khan

Non-Bailable warrant issued against PTI chief Imran Khan

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The election commission on Thursday issued a non-bailable arrest warrant for opposition party leader and former cricket star Imran Khan in a contempt of court case - a move that was swiftly rejected by his party.

The case begun on Abbasi's petition seeking disqualification of Imran Khan and Jehangir Tareen over the non-disclosure of assets, existence of offshore companies, as well as PTI being a foreign-aided party.

The PTI is set to challenge the warrants in the Islamabad High Court.

This is the first time the commission has issued non-bailable warrant for him.

The case in question has been filed by Akbar S Babar, one of the founding members of PTI.

The petitioner alleged that Khan received almost $3 million in foreign funds that were collected through two offshore companies.

On the PTI's petition, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) had later suspended the arrest warrants. This warrant has been issued for failing to appear in the court repeatedly and not giving a written justification or apology to the court for not appearing despite various letters.

Khan and ex-premier Nawaz Sharif have been at loggerhead for years, especially after the Panama Papers scandal in April last year. The ECP had directed Khan to submit his reply by September 25. "We will also look into whether this is contempt of the IHC's full bench or not, and then (the party) we will challenge it".

The ECP further accused him of underestimating the authority of the commission and "bringing it into disrepute and disrespect and to interfere with, obstruct, interrupt and prejudice the process of law and the due course of proceedings, and scandalising the commission".

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