ISLAMABAD: The scrutiny committee of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has sought copies of the computerised national identity cards (CNICs) of local individuals who gave donations to the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) during the period between 2013 and 2015.
While the PPP questioned the panel’s jurisdiction to seek a document that was not a requirement under the law, the PML-N promised to provide the CNICs of the donors it could find. The case will now be heard by the committee on Dec 11, days after retirement of the incumbent Chief Election Commissioner retired Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza.
Talking to reporters after hearing of the foreign funding cases against the PPP and the PML-N, Parliamentary Secretary for Railways Farrukh Habib demanded that the ECP should announce the decision the same day. He claimed that the PML-N had transactions worth billions of rupees but no record of them. He said that PML-N’s Zubair Gul had registered a company in the UK in 2015, adding that Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari of the PPP needs to explain fake bank accounts.
PPP’s counsel Sardar Latif Khosa said that the PTI had “undoubtedly” obtained funds from prohibited sources and continues to use delaying tactics, continuing to say that the day the case goes to its logical conclusion, PTI members in the national and provincial assemblies would lose their seats. He said that is why the PTI had approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC) multiple times to stall the scrutiny committee’s proceedings.
Asked if the PPP will submit the documents sought by the committee on Dec 11, he replied in the negative. “We told them it is not your mandate to seek details of local donations. How can you ask for something today which was not a legal requirement when the statements had been submitted with the ECP”, he questioned.
Talking to reporters, PML-N leader Mohsin Shahnawaz Ranjha called for a probe of PTI’s accounts for years stretching from 2013 to 2018, and said a new petition in this regard would be filed with the ECP. He said the PML-N has no company registered abroad but the PTI has companies registered in US. Further, he claimed that citizens from Texas sent millions of dollars into the accounts of Prime Minister Imran Khan. He said $19,500 had been sent to Mr Khan’s account on Feb 13, 2011, adding that the law does not permit a political party to collect funds from foreign nationals.
PML-N counsel Jehangir Khan Jadoon, while talking to Dawn, said the scrutiny committee was told that the party will provide copies of the CNICs of the donors it is able to contact. He said the party has already shared details of the bank transactions and the ECP can get the copies of the CNICs of the donors from the banks as well.
Published in Dawn, December 4th, 2019