Pakistan politics

Pakistan poll body issues non-bailable arrest warrants against Imran Khan

The election commission said it did this because the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chief repeatedly failed to appear before it in a contempt case.

The Election Commission of Pakistan on Thursday issued non-bailable arrest warrants against Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan in a contempt of court case, Dawn reported. The poll body said that the arrest warrants were issued because of Khan “repeatedly failing to appear for the hearing and for failing to send a written apology to the Election Commission of Pakistan for his absence in court”.

Khan had accused the poll body of being biased against him in the foreign funding case, following which a Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf dissident leader, Babar S Akbar, had filed a contempt case against him. The poll body on Thursday ordered that Khan be arrested and brought to the next hearing of the contempt case, scheduled for October 26.

Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf spokesperson Naeemul Haq said that the party would challenge the warrants in the Islamabad High Court.

The poll body had issued bailable warrants against Khan on September 14, but the Islamabad High Court suspended these warrants after a petition by Khan’s party. “A new warrant is issued in the same case where a [bailable] warrant was already suspended,” Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf member and lawyer Babar Awan said. “We will also look into whether this is contempt of the Islamabad High Court’s full bench or not, and then [the party] we will challenge it”.

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