Imran Challenges Proceedings In Contempt Of Election Commission, Jail Trial

Urges Lahore High Court to allow trial to proceed in an open court through a free and fair trial

Imran Challenges Proceedings In Contempt Of Election Commission, Jail Trial

Former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) founder Imran Khan has challenged proceedings against him in a contempt of Election Commission case and for the trial to be conducted in jail.

The Election Commission had set December 13 as the date to indict Imran for contempt of the commission.

Imran filed a representation in the Lahore High Court (LHC) through his lawyer Salman Akram Raja and Barrister Samir Khosa. He has listed the federal government, the Election Commission of Pakistan and Adiala Jail Rawalpindi's superintendent as the respondents.

In the petition, Imran has adopted the stance that the Election Commission of Pakistan illegally launched contempt proceedings against him. He contended that the Election Commission is not a constitutional court and does not hold powers to start contempt proceedings against an individual. 

Further, Imran argued in his petition that the Election Commission had unilaterally decided to conduct proceedings against Imran behind bars, which was also illegal.

A secret trial in jail violates freedoms enshrined in Article 4 of the Constitution, Imran argued. He urged the court to declare the ECP's decision to conduct a jail trial illegal.

Instead, the court was urged to direct the ECP to conduct a trial in an open court in a free, fair and transparent manner.

Further, Imran urged the court to restrain the commission from indicting him until the Lahore High Court issues a final verdict.

The commission had earlier decided on December 6 that the PTI founder and former PTI information secretary Fawad Chaudhry would be indicted in a case of contempt of the commission and the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) for repeated allegations of bias against the commission and its chief. The commission had also decided to conduct the trial in Adiala Jail.