Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb on Thursday announced that the government had decided to send a declaration against the PTI to the Supreme Court of Pakistan in light of the Election Commission of Pakistan's (ECP) decision, which ruled that the party had indeed taken prohibited funding.
"The decision [announced by the ECP] has clearly proven that PTI is a foreign-aided party," she asserted, explaining that under the law and Constitution, the government was now bound to send a declaration to the apex court.
Aurangzeb said that the law ministry had been given a time of three days to prepare the declaration and present it in the next federal cabinet meeting.
The government's decision comes after the electoral body, in its long-delayed verdict, had ruled that PTI had "wilfully" and "knowingly" received prohibited funding — which include a number of foreign donors.
In its order, the commission also said that it was "constrained to hold that Imran Khan failed to discharge his obligations as mandated under the Pakistani statutes".
In a press conference after the federal cabinet meeting today, Aurangzeb said that action against the PTI will be taken under the Political Parties Order (PPO) 2002 and Election Act 2017.
She stated that the case was extremely important because it was now proven that PTI had 16 undeclared accounts. "The party took ownership of only 8 [accounts] out of 26.
"The money kept coming in but it was not declared," she pointed out, adding that the PTI took 51 adjournments during the proceedings of the prohibited funding case over the period of eight years and received funding from 351 foreign companies which she said was a crime under Pakistan’s law.
'FIA to probe prohibited funding'
Meanwhile, the minister said that another important decision that was taken in the cabinet meeting was that the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) will be given the task of investigating the funding case.
"Cabinet has given instructions to the FIA and interior ministry to conduct an independent inquiry and investigation into money laundering, fake accounts and misappropriation of funds."
Aurangzeb revealed that all the financial institutions such as the FIA had begun probing all the individuals involved in the crime.
She went on to say that the PML-N government was unlike other governments and vowed that nothing will be done through backdoor channels.