ISLAMABAD: The PTI moved the Islamabad High Court on Saturday seeking scrutiny of the funds of at least 17 major political parties, including the PML-N and PPP.

The petition, filed by PTI Additional Secretary-General Amir Mahmood Kiyani through Anwar Mansoor Khan, came days after the Election Commission of Pakistan, in line with an IHC order, decided to conduct daily hearings on the foreign funding case. In its order, the IHC had directed the ECP to conclude the case within 30 days.

The petition requested the court to direct the ECP to approach the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for information regarding the funding of the 17 political parties, made respondents in the plea, before proceeding with daily hearings against their party.

According to the petition, the PTI was the only party facing accountability in the form of daily proceedings. It requested the court to end this “discrimination” by holding other political parties accountable as well.

The petition said that the ECP had been asked time and again to verify the source of funding for the PML-N and PPP but the commission allegedly ignored these requests. However, the ECP had rejected these allegations in a statement last week, saying there were no delays in cases against other parties.

PTI has also challenged the court order regarding the 30-day deadline.

The foreign funding case has been pending since Nov 14, 2014, and it was filed by Akbar S. Babar who had alleged that there were financial irregularities in the PTI’s funding from Pakistan and abroad.

On January 4 this year, the ECP’s scrutiny committee, formed in March 2018, submitted its report on the PTI’s foreign funding case after 95 hearings.

Published in Dawn, April 24th, 2022

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