Imran appears before ATC, gets bail in all cases

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Judgment in Imran, Tareen’s disqualification case reserved
Sophia Siddiqui

Islamabad

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan appeared on Tuesday before an anti-terrorism court hearing four cases against him.
Imran, through his counsel, surrendered himself before the ATC, which had issued non-bailable warrants against him and declared him a proclaimed offender as he had not appeared in a single hearing.
The ATC approved the PTI chairman’s bail for Rs200,000 in each case. The hearing was then adjourned until Nov 24.
Speaking to the media, Imran said the party was peacefully protesting [in 2014] for transparent elections but a terrorism case was lodged against them.
The ATC is hearing three cases regarding the attack on the then Islamabad Operations SSP Asmatullah Junejo and state buildings during the 2014 protest sit-in by PTI and Pakistan Awami Tehreek.
The two ‘political cousins’, Imran and PAT chief Tahirul Qadri, face charges of destroying property in the Red Zone, attacking the state TV channel’s building and injuring SSP Junejo.
Meanwhile, a three member bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Saqib Nisar Tuesday reserved judgment in disqualification case filed by PML (N) leader Hanif Abbassi against PTI Chairman Imran Khan and its Secretary General Jehangir Tareen.
The Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Saqib Nisar noted that it should not be expected that the court will give its verdict in the case tomorrow.
He remarked that the bench is looking for the truth, and will have to see if the respondents were dishonest in their dealings.
PML-N leader Hanif Abbasi had filed the case against Imran and Tareen seeking their disqualification from Parliament over their alleged non-declaration of assets and ownership of offshore companies.
Presenting his arguments, Abbasi’s counsel Akram Sheikh said Imran changed his stance during the course of hearing many a times.
The chief justice observed that the benefit of speaking the truth is that one does not have to remember what was said before.
Earlier, responding to arguments by Imran’s counsel, the chief justice observed that the PTI chief declared his London flat but not the offshore company.
Imran’s counsel further informed the bench that his client declared the London flat in 2000 via an amnesty scheme.
Responding to the chief justice’s observation that the offshore company was still not declared, Imran’s counsel contended that his client wasn’t the beneficial owner of the company nor its shareholder which is why it was not declared.
Abbasi had filed the petition in November last year. It accused the PTI leaders of not declaring their assets to the Election Commission of Pakistan and violations of the lncome Tax Ordinance, 1979 and Peoples Act, 1974. It also claimed that the PTI is a ‘foreign-funded’ party.
Hearing Tareen’s case, who was represented by his counsel Sikandar Mohmand, the court observed that it seems Tareen is the beneficial owner of the offshore company, Shiny View Ltd.
Justice Umar Ata Bandiyal noted that it is clear in the trust deed submitted by Tareen that there are two lifetime beneficiaries of the trust.
Abbasi’s counsel argued that the presence of the offshore company is not declared in tax returns and nomination papers of Tareen. During the previous hearing on November 9, the chief justice observed that Tareen has already served his punishment according to the law. Attorney General Ashtar Ausaf Ali presented his arguments before the bench, saying Tareen’s counsel challenged two sections of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) act.
He added that the fine imposed on Tareen by SECP in 2008 for insider trading has been submitted in the national kitty and there is no point objecting to the law after 10 years.
Tareen provided the court the trust deed regarding a 12-acre property he owns in the United Kingdom. The case against Imran is related to the bank account detail of his offshore company, Niazi Services Limited.