LHC suspends call-up notice issued to Imran Khan

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The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Tuesday suspended the operation of a call-up notice, issued to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran khan by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in the foreign funding case.

Justice Asjad Javed Ghural passed the orders while hearing a petition, filed by the PTI chairman, challenging the call-up notice. The court also sought reply from the respondents besides seeking assistance from the attorney general for Pakistan in the matter.

Imran Khan’s counsel argued before the court that the agency did not have the power to hold an inquiry into the matter. “Even the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had also not directed the agency to hold an inquiry into the matter, while deciding the foreign funding case,” he added. He submitted that any political party could raise funds in accordance with the law and political parties were bound to declare sources of their funding.

The court questioned whether the FIA was empow-ered to hold such an inquiry. Whether the federal government could ask the agency for holding an inquiry into such a matter, it added.

The counsel responded that the FIA did not have power to do an inquiry into such matters, adding that the FIA itself initiated the inquiry, as it was not stated in the notice that the inquiry had been ordered by the government. The court questioned whether the PTI owned all these accounts.

To which, the counsel submitted that the party did not recognise 13 accounts. He submitted that it was never alleged that the funds were proceeds of a crime.

At this, the court suspended the operation of call-up notice, and sought reply from the respondents till the next date of hearing, December 7.

The PTI chairman had filed the petition submitting that the FIA had launched an illegal inquiry into foreign funding case and issued a call-up notice to him for appearance before an investigation team on Nov 7.

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