Trouble mounts for Imran Khan as Pakistan election agency rules PTI got illegal funds

Islamabad, PakistanEdited By: Srishti Singh SisodiaUpdated: Aug 02, 2022, 07:37 PM IST

File photo of Imran Khan. Photograph:(Reuters)

Story highlights

The ruling said that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) received funds from different people and companies abroad, including business tycoon Arif Naqvi, owner of a Dubai-based equity group

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) ruled on Tuesday (August 2) that former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s party had received millions of dollars as prohibited funds. As per the media reports, ECP also issued a notice to the party asking why the funds should not be confiscated.

The implication of such activities could result in Khan being banned from politics. Notably, Khan and his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party rose to prominence on an anti-corruption drive. This particular ruling appears to be a major setback for Imran Khan as he is currently leading a campaign against the new government.

The long-awaited verdict was announced by a three-member ECP bench headed by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja. The case was filed by PTI founding member Akbar S Babar. It had been pending since November 14, 2014.

As seen by the news agency Reuters, the ruling stated: “The commission is satisfied that the contributions and donations have been received by the respondent party from prohibited sources.” 

The commission also said that the party also hid 13 accounts. The ruling further added that the declaration submitted to the commission about the party finances by Khan as its chairman from 2008 to 2013 was “found to be grossly inaccurate”. 

As mentioned by the news agency, the ruling said that PTI received funds from different people and companies abroad, including business tycoon Arif Naqvi, owner of a Dubai-based equity group.

Naqvi is among several people charged by US prosecutors with being part of an international scheme to defraud investors, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Although, Naqvi has denied all the allegations.

The commission said the party was a “willing recipient of prohibited money” amounting to $2.1 million from Naqvi’s Wootton Cricket Limited. The mentioned entity is registered in the Cayman Islands.

As per the ruling, several other foreign accounts in the United States, Britain, Australia, UAE, Canada, Switzerland and other countries, deposited money in Khan’s party accounts.

(With inputs from agencies)


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