ISLAMABAD: Khawar Farid Maneka and his ex-wife Bushra Bibi used to fight over Imran Khan’s frequent presence in their home before the couple got divorced, a member of Khawar Farid Maneka’s domestic staff told a local court on Tuesday.

Mohammad Latif’s testimony was recorded during proceedings of a case related to the marriage of Bushra Bibi with former prime minister Imran Khan during her Iddat period.

Mr Maneka, Aun Chaudhry and Mufti Saeed have so far testified in this case.

Appearing before senior civil judge Qudratullah, Mr Maneka’s domestic helper Latif testified he had been serving the Maneka family for the past 35 years. He said Mr Maneka was a customs officer and remained posted in different cities during his service, while his family stayed mostly in Lahore and Islamabad.

According to Mr Latif, Mr Khan started visiting Maneka’s house in 2015. He said Mr Maneka and Bushra Bibi had fought each other over Mr Khan’s frequent presence in the house and finally the couple got divorced in 2017.

The judge asked the defence and prosecution counsel to argue on the maintainability of the case at the next hearing.

Earlier, in his testimony before a senior civil judge last week, Mufti Saeed, who officiated PTI Chairman Imran Khan’s Nikah with Bushra Bibi, had testified that the nuptials were solemnised twice, once in January and then in February of 2018.

He said this was done as the first Nikah was performed during the former first lady’s Iddat period. He added that on January 1, 2018, Mr Khan asked him to solemnise the Nikah in Lahore and he visited a residence in Lahore’s Defence area before solemnising the Nikah and inquired from her sister about Islamic formalities.

According to Mr Saeed, he was assured that all formalities had been met.

When the judge asked him why these questions weren’t put to Bushra Bibi, he replied it goes against traditions to ask such questions of the bride.

The couple started living in Banigala — Mr Khan’s home — after the Nikah, Mr Saeed said, adding that in February, he was informed that the Nikah was solemnised during Iddat as the divorce was finalised in Nov 2017.

As per the cleric, he was informed that the Nikah took place on Jan 1 because of “a spiritual prophecy”.

The Nikah was “un-Islamic and against the principles of Shariah” as Iddat must be completed at the ex-husband’s residence since it provides an opportunity for reconciliation. The Nikah was again solemni-sed in February at Bani Gala, but “I didn’t sign the papers,” Mr Saeed added.

Talking about Mr Khan’s second marriage, Aun Chaudhry — once a close confidant of the PTI chief — stated before the court that the marriage had ended in Nov 2015. Mr Khan divorced Reham Khan “on the advice of Bushra Bibi” while she was abroad, and the divorce deed was sent via email, Mr Chaudhry testified.

He added that Mr Khan was quite upset following the divorce and frequently visited Bushra Bibi’s residence while she was still married to Khawar Farid Maneka — the complainant in this case.

As per Mr Chaudhry, he was ordered by the PTI chief in December 2017 to make arrangements for his Nikah.

Published in Dawn, December 6th, 2023

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