16 August, 2023 | Srishti Ruchandani
A division bench, which includes Islamabad High Court Chief Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Tariq Mehmood Jahangiri will hear the case.
The Islamabad High Court will take up an appeal filed by former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, currently imprisoned in Attock Jail, against his conviction and sentence in the Toshakhana case on August 22, Pakistan-based Dawn reported. A division bench, which includes Islamabad High Court Chief Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Tariq Mehmood Jahangiri will hear the case. The development comes after a trial court in Islamabad on August 5 found Imran Khan guilty of “corrupt practices” and sentenced him to three years in prison in the case. Khan has also been disqualified from contesting general elections. The 30-page order at the time read, “He [Imran] cheated while providing information about gifts he obtained from Toshakhana which later proved to be false and inaccurate. His dishonesty has been established beyond doubt,” Dawn reported.
After Additional District and Sessions Judge Humayun Dilawar announced the judgement, police arrested Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan from his Zaman Park residence in Lahore.
Subsequently, Imran Khan approached the Islamabad High Court through his lawyer Khawaja Haris Ahmed and Barrister Gohar Ali Khan against his conviction. He also requested the court to also suspend his imprisonment sentence till a final verdict on his appeal.
According to the appeal, Imran Khan was about to challenge the court order on the maintainability of the Toshakhana case in the apex court, Dawn reported. However, the trial court judge had fixed the date for final arguments on August 5.
The petition stated that the trial court convicted PTI chairman Imran Khan with a “pre-disposed mind”, and sentenced him to three years imprisonment with a fine of Pakistani Rupees (PKR) 100,000. At the previous hearing, Justice Farooq had said that he would make a decision on the petition after hearing the officials concerned and issuing notices to the respondents, according to Dawn.
The Toshakhana case, filed by ruling lawmakers of the then-coalition government, is based on a criminal complaint filed by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP). The case alleges that Imran Khan had “deliberately concealed” details of the gifts he retained from the Toshakhana during his tenure as Pakistan Prime Minister and proceeds from their reported sales, Dawn reported.
According to Toshakhana rules, gifts and other materials received by persons to whom these rules are applicable shall be reported to the cabinet division. Imran Khan has faced a number of legal issues over his retention of presents and it resulted in his disqualification by the ECP.