Imran Khan challenges rejection of his nomination papers from 2 seats

LAHORE — Pakistan’s jailed former premier Imran Khan on Friday approached the Lahore High Court (LHC) against the rejection of his nomination papers on two National Assembly seats in the run-up to the general elections.

Khan, 71, filed two separate petitions in the LHC challenging the decisions of the returning officers (ROs) and the appellate tribunals for rejecting his nomination papers from NA-122, Lahore and NA-89, Mianwali, cities of Punjab province.

A three-judge full bench headed by Justice Ali Baqar Najafi will hear the petitions on Saturday.

The founder of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) asked the court to set aside the decisions of the returning officers and the appellate tribunals of rejecting the nomination papers from both constituencies of the National Assembly on “flimsy grounds.”

Khan’s nomination papers were rejected primarily on the grounds of being convicted in the Toshakhana case and “moral grounds”.

The appellate tribunals also upheld the decisions of the respective ROs with an observation that the conviction and sentence were two different terms as conviction pertained to the guilty verdict and sentence stands for the rigours following conviction.

The tribunals noted that the conviction meant a guilty verdict pronounced by a court about the delinquency attributed to an accused, whereas the sentence denoted the quantum of punishment.

The tribunals observed that the decision of ECP regarding the disqualification of the petitioner was still in the field and had not been set aside from the competent forum.

The former cricketer-turned-politician, who has been in jail since August last year, was arrested last Tuesday by Ra­w­a­lpindi police in at least a dozen cases about the May 9 violence, including the attack on the army headqua­rters. — (PTI)