Islamabad [Pakistan], October 5 (ANI): Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has filed a petition after the election watchdog issued a contempt notice against him and his close aide Fawad Chaudhry arguing that holding contempt of court proceedings was only the jurisdiction of the judiciary, media reports said.
This comes as the electoral watchdog had earlier issued contempt notices to both the leaders for levelling allegations against the members of the Election Commission of Pakistan including Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja.
To hear Imran Khan and Fawad Chaudhry's constitutional petition, Lahore High Court (LHC) Chief Justice Ameer Bhatti constituted a larger bench on Wednesday, reported The Express Tribune.
A three-member larger bench comprised of Justice Sadaqat Ali Khan, Justice Mirza Waqas Rauf and Justice Jawad-ul-Hasan. The hearing of the constitutional petitions is scheduled for 1 pm on Thursday.
Imran Khan and Chaudhry, in the petition, argued that the electoral watchdog contempt notices have no legality attached to it as it is an administrative commission and does not have the status of a judiciary, reported the Express Tribune.
Highlighting these points in the petition Imran Khan made an argument that the contempt notices issued by ECP to both the leaders must be declared null and void. The bench later issued notices to the PTI chief, Fawad Chaudhary, deputy attorney general and the ECP.
Imran Khan had moved a reference before the Supreme Judicial Council against Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja pleading the Council to order the CEC's removal on the account of the "commission of continuous and deliberate misconduct," reported Dawn.
A delegation from the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) allegedly met with the CEC and four other ECP members on July 29 in order to "pressurize" him into announcing the verdict in the prohibited funding case where PTI is alleged of taking money from foreign companies.
The reference further argued the CEC had violated the ECP's code of conduct and failed to fulfil its constitutional obligations. The PTI said that the chief election commissioner is subject to the same code of conduct as judges of the superior judiciary, and high court judges are forbidden from discussing ongoing cases with anyone or any institution.
"The CEC must be removed from one of the most respectable and sacred constitutional posts," the reference said and reported Dawn. (ANI)