In the ongoing Toshakhana case, the Supreme Court of Pakistan has instructed Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan to await a verdict from the Islamabad High Court (IHC) before seeking any relief. Imran Khan had approached the Supreme Court, requesting a stay on the trial proceedings until both the SC and the IHC issued their respective decisions.
A three-member bench led by Justice Yahya Afridi, along with Justice Mazahar Ali Naqvi and Justice Musarat Hilali, made these remarks during the hearing of Khan’s petition against the Toshakhana case. Justice Afridi informed Khan’s counsel, Khawaja Haris, that the SC would take up the case only after the IHC had issued an order. He also speculated that the IHC might possibly order a halt to the trial on August 3.
The Islamabad High Court has scheduled a hearing on August 3 to address Imran Khan’s appeal challenging the maintainability of the Toshakhana case. Justice Afridi emphasized that the court will not interfere in the trial court’s matters until the IHC has made a decision.
During the hearing, the SC issued a notice to the officials of the Election Commission of Pakistan related to the case and adjourned the hearing of Imran Khan’s petition until August 4. Despite already granting relief to Khan, Justice Yahya Afridi expressed surprise that the PTI chief had approached the Supreme Court after receiving the relief.
Khawaja Haris questioned the jurisdiction of the case, stating that the trial court had recorded the statement of Section 342 and ordered the presentation of a list of witnesses. He added that the trial court would consider the trial completed if the list of witnesses was not provided. Haris requested the court to halt the trial until decisions were made in the SC and the IHC.
In response, Justice Afridi pointed out that no request for an injunction had been made and suggested that the counsel file an application for an injunction. He emphasized that the SC could not interfere in the trial court’s proceedings at this stage and urged Khan’s counsel to await the IHC’s decision before seeking relief from the apex court.
Imran Khan’s plea for a stay on the trial court’s proceedings in the Toshakhana case had been rejected by the SC last week as well. During the latest hearing, the bench clarified that they would not interfere in the trial court’s matters regarding the Toshakhana case. Haris informed the court about multiple pending petitions related to the jurisdiction of the trial court and the transfer of the case to the IHC.
The Toshakhana case led to the disqualification of the former prime minister under Article 63(1)(p) of the Constitution for making “false statements and incorrect declarations.” As the case continues, Imran Khan has been directed to await the IHC’s decision before seeking further relief from the Supreme Court.