ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Tuesday reserved its judgement on a PTI application seeking cross-examination of witnesses in the prohibited funding case.
The plea was filed during the hearing of a show-cause notice issued to the PTI after the ECP order of Aug 2.
PTI lawyer Anwar Mansoor Khan urged the ECP to allow him to cross-examine witnesses, including the bank managers who furnished PTI’s bank statements on the instructions of the State Bank of Pakistan.
IHC asks the party to prove its petition is not premature
“The bank managers should be asked how they prepared the PTI bank statements, and how these bank statements were received from the State Bank of Pakistan,” the PTI lawyer contended.
“The ECP has the power to requisition any individual,” he said.
The PTI lawyer had challenged the show-cause notice and termed it illegal.
The ECP’s legal representative stated that the process of investigations had been completed and the PTI was part of it before the scrutiny committee for four years and before the ECP for eight years and not once it had demanded cross-examination of the witnesses.
After hearing the two sides, the ECP reserved the judgement on the petition that will be announced later.
The Islamabad High Court on Tuesday asked the counsel for the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf to prove that the petition, requesting the IHC to set aside the ECP’s report on prohibited funding and to restrain the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) from conducting inquiries into the case, is not premature.
An IHC larger bench comprising Chief Justice Aamer Farooq, Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb and Justice Babar Sattar was hearing the PTI’s petition filed against the ECP report on the prohibited funding case.
Anwar Mansoor Khan, the counsel for PTI, argued before the court that the federal government, while acting on the ECP’s report, issued direction to the FIA to conduct inquiries into alleged prohibi-ted funding.
He said the FIA had initiated 185 inquiries across the country against the PTI leadership in connection with prohibited funding.
Justice Farooq asked the PTI counsel to conclude the arguments as early as possible, observing that the lawyer had taken too much time to come to the point and with such slow pace the hearing would likely to conclude by June next year.
The bench advised the counsel to take a couple of hours to conclude the arguments and adjourned the hearing till Jan 10, 2023.
Published in Dawn, December 21st, 2022
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