As the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Tuesday resumed hearing the foreign funding case against the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), the party's counsel claimed that dual nationals were permitted under the law to fund political parties.

A three-member bench headed by Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja conducted the hearing.

During the hearing, PTI's counsel Anwar Mansoor raised an objection against the ECP, saying it was not fully functional as it was operating without two of its members, who retired in 2019.

Also read: ECP incomplete after two members’ retirement

He also cited Article 218 of the Constitution, which stipulates the formation of a "permanent election commission consisting of a chairman and four members, one from each province".

He contended that the ECP was not entitled to issue orders on [any matter] until it was fully functional. He made this observation in reference to April 12 announcement by the ECP regarding the delimitation schedule for the National Assem­bly and provincial assemblies for the next general elections.

The PTI counsel said the documents provided by the ECP's scrutiny committee to petitioner Akbar S. Babar were not bona fide, adding that Babar talked out of context on the matter during his interactions with the media.

Mansoor said he would complete his arguments in the case in three days, and told the bench that he had already informed the commission about his unavailability from April 20.

After hearing his arguments, the ECP adjourned the hearing till next week, declaring it would hold proceedings for three consecutive days in the coming week.

The ECP had last week said it would hear the case on a daily basis in line with the Islamabad High Court’s order which directed it to dispose of the matter within 30 days.

The IHC issued the order after it dismissed an appeal of the PTI against the ECP order rejecting two PTI applications seeking dismissal of the foreign funding case and disassociating its petitioner Akbar S. Babar from the case and keeping the PTI documents secret.

On January 4 this year, the ECP’s scrutiny committee, formed in March 2018 to examine the PTI’s foreign funding in one month, finally submitted its report after 95 hearings and nearly four years.

The report, based on eight volumes of record requisitioned through the State Bank of Pakistan, proved that the PTI leadership had allegedly committed gross violations of funding laws by allowing the collection of millions of dollars and billions of rupees without any source and details from foreigners, including Indian nationals and foreign companies.

Opinion

The sixth wave

The sixth wave

PCR testing has drastically gone down in Pakistan and our disease surveillance system needs much more strengthening.

Editorial

Udaipur killing
Updated 01 Jul, 2022

Udaipur killing

The crime committed in Udaipur did not happen in a vacuum.
Unacceptable demand
Updated 01 Jul, 2022

Unacceptable demand

Negotiating with extremists is tricky; no peace treaty with them has lasted beyond a few months.
Tough times ahead
01 Jul, 2022

Tough times ahead

THE finance ministry’s projection of 15pc inflation, much higher than the targeted rate of 11.5pc, during the new...
More ‘prior actions’
Updated 30 Jun, 2022

More ‘prior actions’

It is crucial that the IMF reconsiders its stance and releases the funds at the earliest to calm uneasy markets.
Growing power crisis
30 Jun, 2022

Growing power crisis

THE country’s escalating power crisis risks exacerbating the law-and-order situation as people take to the streets...
Attack on polio team
30 Jun, 2022

Attack on polio team

THE threat of deadly violence never seems to diminish for health workers and police officials involved in...