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Pak election commission bans Imran Khan from running for public office for 5 years!

Due to allegations that he illegally sold official gifts he acquired from foreign dignitaries and heads of state, Pakistan’s electoral commission on Friday barred the former prime minister Imran Khan from running for office for five years, according to local media. Imran Khan’s attorney, Gohar Khan, stated that the ECP (Election Commission of Pakistan) had determined that Imran Khan had engaged in corrupt activities.

‘We are currently going to contest it at the Islamabad High Court’. The case is a new development in the political struggle that has been going on since even before Imran was removed from office in April. The former international cricket player and his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party are engaged in a number of political battles.

Syed Ali Zafar, a PTI senator and a lawyer for Khan, stated at a news conference on Friday before the decision that ‘in our opinion the Election Commission of Pakistan is not a court, thus they can’t deliver a declaration to disqualify somebody’.  The lawsuit revolves around a government division called ‘Toshakhana,’ which during the Mughal Empire refers to the ‘treasure halls’ used by the princely rulers of the subcontinent to preserve and show presents they received.

Only presents that are valued at less than a specific amount may be retained by government officials, who are required to report all gifts. More pricey products must be donated to Toshakhana, but in some situations the receiver may be able to purchase them back at a discount of around 50%. While serving as president, Imran increased this discount from 20%. Imran and his wife reportedly got pricey presents during international visits, including posh watches, jewellery, designer purses, and fragrances, according to reports in Pakistani newspapers.

Khan failed to disclose several gifts and the proceeds from their sale. He acknowledged not registering certain presents because of national security concerns when the accusations were initially made against him. However, he then confirmed in a written declaration that he had bought goods for around 22 million rupees ($100,000) and had subsequently sold them for more than double that amount.


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