The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday constituted a larger bench to hear a plea seeking Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf chief Imran Khan's disqualification for allegedly concealing his daughter, Tyrian Jade White, in his nomination papers.
The three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Amir Farooq consists of Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani and Justice Arbab Muhammad Tahir.
According to a cause list issued by the IHC, the bench will hear the the petition on February 9 (Thursday).
The petitioner, Muhammad Sajid, in his plea had maintained that while the former premier has denied allegations that he has a daughter, he refrains from commenting on the matter now, allegedly "because he knows that there is evidence against him”.
The application seeks the PTI chief's disqualification under Article 62(i)(f) under the pretence that the concealment of the alleged daughter renders him unfit for office.
Also read: Tyrian White plea 'not maintainable': Imran
Imran submitted his response to the application on Wednesday, arguing that the plea was “not maintainable” on legal grounds. He maintained that the court could not proceed in this matter as he has already ceased to be a member of the parliament.
During proceedings on Feb 2, as IHC Chief Justice Amir Farooq presided over the hearing, the court observed that Imran's primary contention was that he was no longer a public office holder.
The high court also noted that the petitioner has challenged Imran's 2018 oath.
The court has sought clarification from the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on the matter and requested a copy of the notification identifying Imran.
The court further observed that Imran's legal team had raised concerns over the constitution of the bench.
"You are an excellent judge," responded Imran's lawyer Abuzar Salman Khan, adding that "we have only put some information forth".
The chief justice elaborated that he had recused himself from hearing a similar petition in 2018 but not on personal grounds.
Read More Imran to be indicted in Toshakhana case on Feb 7
Nonetheless, the judge admitted the PTI lawyer's request and ordered the constitution of a larger bench for February 9 where the court will resume the hearing.
It may be noted that in 2018, petitioner Abdul Wahab Baloch had contested that the PTI chairman should be disqualified under Article 62(i)(f) of the Constitution for providing incorrect information in his nomination papers, adding that he is no longer “Sadiq and Ameen”.
The petitioner at the time was a candidate of the Pakistan Justice and Democratic Party in the last general election. Baloch later joined the PTI and filed a miscellaneous petition in February 2019 to withdraw the case.
Later, the IHC declared the petition seeking the disqualification of the then prime minister Imran inadmissible.
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