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SC asks for records of Bani Gala transactions between Imran, Jemima

Updated September 12, 2017

Resuming the disqualification case of Imran Khan on Tuesday, Chief Justice Pakistan Saqib Nisar questioned whether Imran's counsel has submitted the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman's complete financial records to the court.

Justice Nisar pointed out that the PTI chief had not attached details of the money trail for the purchase of the Bani Gala property.

"Where are the receipts of the transactions that prove that the PTI chief borrowed money from Jemima and returned it to her later?" asked Justice Nisar.

He also wondered how Imran could buy the property in Jemima's name for which he had asked her for a loan.

In December, 2016, Khan had told the Election commission of Pakistan (ECP) that he had borrowed money from his ex-wife to pay for the Bani Gala land, which he had purchased on March 13, 2002 for Rs43.5 million — an amount that, according to Khan, was payable in instalments. He had also said that the property was purchased in Jemima's name; however, she had transferred it to his name as a gift after their divorce.

The bench, while reiterating its earlier statements that the financial transactions between husband and wife should not be raised in court, insisted that the PTI chief was still bound to declare the loan in his financial records when he filed his nomination papers before 2002, since it was a liability.

Responding to the chief justice's question as to why Jemima sent money through Rashid Khan instead of transferring it directly to Imran, Bokhari said that Rashid, who was a mutual friend of the former couple, was an employee of the CitiBank and would convert the currency before passing it on to the PTI chief. He added that $285,000 were transferred to Rashid's account.

The bench demanded the money trail of $126,000 which is allegedly missing. Bokhari informed the court that the transaction records of $16,000 and $5,000 that took place between Jemima and Rashid were available and asked for a day's time to submit them. He admitted that the record of $100,000 could not be found.

Imran's lawyer Naeem Bokhari maintained that his client had submitted all documents as per the court's instructions, including the details of the Bani Gala property. However, the chief justice maintained that the documents submitted were photocopies and therefore, not acceptable.

Meanwhile, Akram Sheikh, the lawyer for PML-N's Hanif Abbasi, raised doubts over the authenticity of the money trail sent by Jemima in June.

The hearing was adjourned until September 26th when Bokhari will submit the additional documents required by court.

The case, filed by PML-N's Hanif Abbasi, is being heard by a three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Saqib Nisar. The petition asks for the disqualification of Imran Khan and PTI Secretary General Jahangir Tareen for the non-disclosure of assets, ownership of offshore companies, and for PTI being a foreign-aided party.