LHC suspends ECP’s arrest warrants for Imran Khan, Asad Umar, Fawad Chaudhry

PTI leaders Imran Khan, Asad Umar, and Fawad Chaudhry. — AFP/PID/File
  • LHC judge Sadaqat Ali Khan heard the application.
  • Court directs ECP to carry on with contempt proceedings.
  • Contempt case was filed against PTI leaders for insulting ECP.

RAWALPINDI: The Lahore High Court (LHC) Rawalpindi Bench on Monday suspended PTI chief Imran Khan, senior vice president Fawad Chaudhry and party secretary general Asad Umar’s bailable arrest warrants issued by the Election Commission of Pakistan.

The warrants were suspended by Justice Sadaqat Ali Khan hearing the PTI leaders’ plea against the arrest warrants.

Even though the court suspended the warrants, it directed the ECP to carry on with its contempt proceedings against the PTI leaders.

The bailable warrants were issued by ECP’s four-member bench, headed by member Nisar Durrani, last week.

Fawad to challenge warrants

PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry, immediately after the ECP’s decision, had announced that he would challenge the warrants in the high court and file a contempt plea against ECP.

“ECP’s decision to issue arrest warrants in contempt of the high court’s decision,” said Fawad. He said that the case was scheduled for January 17 and the verdict was announced today in violation of the rules.

The PTI leader alleged that it was a “biased” decision of the ECP.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court had also allowed the electoral body to go ahead with contempt proceedings against Khan, Umar and Fawad.

All three PTI leaders did not appear in the last hearing of the case citing different issues. 

Lawyer Ali Bukhari appeared on behalf of PTI leaders and said that Fawad’s mother was seriously ill and he was with her in a hospital in Lahore, while Imran Khan’s doctors had advised him against travelling.

Asad Umar’s lawyer Anwar Mansoor said that the PTI secretary general was to attend the hearing but he could not make it to the federal capital. 

Imran, Fawad and Umar were issued contempt notices by the ECP, in August last year, for insulting the commission and its chief, Sikander Sultan Raja, in various public meetings, press conferences and interviews.

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