ECP Issues Arrest Warrants For Imran, Other Top PTI Leaders

ECP Issues Arrest Warrants For Imran, Other Top PTI Leaders
The Election Commission has issued bailable arrest warrants for PTI chairman Imran Khan and the party's leaders Fawad Chaudhry and Asad Umar in the ongoing contempt case against them.

The order was issued by a four-member bench of the top electoral authority, on Tuesday.

The notices were issued to the former ruling party members in Aug and Sep last for their alleged use of "intemperate" language against Chief Election Commissioner Sikander Sultan Raja and the Commission.

The PTI leaders, at the previous hearing, were given a last chance to appear before the ECP, and were told that their failure to do so would result in issuance of arrest warrants.

During its hearing today (Jan 10), the pleas by the accused for exemption from appearing before the Commission were rejected, and arrest warrants were issued against them against the surety bonds of Rs50,000 each.

The bench then adjourned its hearing into the case until Jan 17.

On 3 January, the SC permitted the election commission to continue its contempt proceedings against PTI chief Imran Khan along with PTI leaders Asad Umar and Fawad Chaudhry.

It may be noted that the ex-premier has routinely criticised the CEC for his alleged collusion with arch-rivals PML-N to bring them into power.

Additionally, he has been bashing the top electoral body for its role with regard to holding the general elections.

Imran was also critical of ECP for its alleged refusal to use the electronic voting machines when he was in power last year. According to him, EVMs were the only way forward for transparent polls in the country.

His criticism drew a stern reaction from his rivals, who accused him of attempts to pressurise ECP for his own political gains.

Earlier today, the ECP sought an explanation from Imran as to why he was holding the top post in his party despite his disqualification.

The commission initiated the process for Khan’s removal from the party chairman’s post last month, in light of its verdict to disqualify the former premier in the Toshakhana reference case. In October 2022, Khan was disqualified from his Mianwali seat in the National Assembly under Article 63(1)(p) of the Constitution for making “false statements and incorrect declaration”.