IHC rejects plea seeking Imran Khan’s disqualification in Tyrian White case

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court, during proceedings on Tuesday, rejected a petition that sought to disqualify Imran Khan, the founder of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), in connection with the Tyrian White case.

The petition was filed against Khan for purportedly failing to disclose White as his daughter in the nomination papers submitted for the 2018 general elections. Today, a new bench of the Islamabad High Court considered the plea, ultimately dismissing it.

The bench comprising Justice Tariq Mehmood Jahangiri, Justice Arbab Mohammad Tahir and Justice Saman Rafat Imtiaz heard the case.

The case had been pending since May 2023 after a three-member bench hearing the case was dissolved by IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq. The decision was taken after the opinions of two judges regarding the plea’s maintainability were uploaded on the court website.

The bench comprised IHC CJ Aamer Farooq, Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani and Justice Arbab Muhammad Tahir and had reserved the verdict in the case on March 30 last year. However, Justice Kayani and Justice Tahir had opined against the petition’s maintainability and uploaded their opinion on the IHC official website which was later removed.

The high court explained that without the signatures of the bench head Justice Farooq, the opinion of two judges could not be declared the bench verdict and uploaded to the court website.

As the hearing started, the petitioner’s lawyer, Advocate Hamid Ali Shah, said that Salman Akram Raja had filed an adjournment petition in this case.

Khan’s lawyer Naeem Haider Panjhuta said that this matter has already been settled and the verdict was also uploaded on the website.

Panjhuta said that after the verdict was removed from the website, the bench was reconstituted through a press release.

Justice Jahangiri asked Panjhuta if he was a lawyer in this case. To this, he replied that he was a proxy counsel.

The judge then said that Justice Kayani and Justice Tahir gave an opinion in this case.

At this, Advocate Shah said that this was the opinion of two judges and the verdict was not signed by the chief justice.

“How can we provide relief when the petition has been dismissed?” questioned Justice Jahangiri.

Advocate Shah said that he needed some time to prepare, adding that he could only assist the court after reading the verdict.

Justice Jahangiri said that the IHC CJ recused himself from the bench and two judges had given their verdict.

The court said that the disqualification plea against Khan had already been dismissed by the bench.

“The majority decision has already been issued,” remarked the court.

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