Pakistan

Imran undaunted by disqualification threat

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Former prime minister and PTI Chairman Imran Khan has rejected speculations that he could be disqualified before the next general elections, saying “there is absolutely no case that can disqualify me”.

“They are trying their best [to disqualify me] as I have so many court cases. Every other day they come up with a new case against me,” the former premier said in an interview with BBC.

Imran Khan is trying to get back into power
He says elections now are the answer to stop Pakistan having the same issues as Sri Lanka
His opponents say he is contributing to them, causing chaos to stir financial instability
Our interview with Pakistan's former PM
Prod:@uszahid pic.twitter.com/5BzqbG9kTo
— Caroline Davies (@caroline_gm_d) January 19, 2023

When asked as to who would head the party in case of his disqualification, Imran replied: “We will cross that bridge when we come to this [disqualification].”

Also read: Toshakhana record disclosure 'potentially damaging' to Pakistan's interests

Reiterating his demand for snap polls, the PTI chief reiterated that the only free and fair elections could ensure stability in the country. “Only way Pakistan could get stability is through free and fair elections.”

When asked why he is demanding polls only a few months earlier as it could further cause damage to economy, Imran said, “The damage has already been done and it’s only going to get worse the longer this government stays.”

“The worry in Pakistan is that we could have a Sri Lanka type situation,” he added

The former prime minister is facing a slew of cases in the top courts, including the Toshakhana reference in which he is accused of unlawfully selling gifts from foreign dignitaries and heads of state for personal gain.

The PTI chairman is accused of misusing his 2018 to 2022 premiership to buy and sell gifts in state possession that were received during visits abroad and worth more than 140 million Pakistani rupees. The gifts included watches given by a royal family.

Also read: Imran disqualified

In October last year, the Election Commission of Pakistan disqualified the deposed premier, saying he had had “intentionally and deliberately” violated the provisions contained in sections 137, 167 and 173 of the Elections Act, 2017 as he submitted a “false statement” and “incorrect declaration” in the details of his assets and liabilities for the year 2020-21.

Subsequently, the district court of Islamabad started the criminal proceedings against the PTI chief after receiving the Toshakhana reference from the ECP.

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