The Supreme Court will take up the plea of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Hanif Abbasi against Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Imran Khan and PTI Secretary General Jahangir Tareen over alleged tax evasion.
Fixation branch of the apex court on Friday constituted a three-member bench led by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, comprising Justice Faisal Arab and Justice Umar Ata Bandial to hear the plea on May 03.
PML-N leader Muhammad Hanif Abbasi had invoked the apex court’s jurisdiction against Imran Khan and Jahangir Tareen under Article 184 (3) of the Constitution. He alleged that Imran Khan has acquired funds from prohibited sources to fund the political activities of the PTI including mobilisation of party activists to engage in civil disobedience and the destruction of state property. He further contended that Imran Khan, while submitting certificates to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) from 2011 to 2014 has declared that no funds were obtained from prohibited sources.
Abbasi alleged that Imran Khan has wilfully concealed incorporation of an offshore company of which he is a beneficial owner, adding that Khan also intentionally concealed investments made in real estate in Islamabad. He further blamed that Khan is involved in evasion of taxes as he didn’t declare sources of income and expenses.
The PML-N leader also claimed that Tareen has misguided the ECP and the FBR by concealing details of his offshore company, submitting false declaration of assets of agricultural income, while filing tax return in 2010 and nomination paper in 2013. Abbasi alleged that Tareen fraudulently overstated his agriculture income to the FBR and is involved in tax evasion of agricultural income as he has ‘over-declared’ income from agricultural sources which is an attempt to unlawfully evade income tax.
Hanif Abbasi submitted that his petitions contain the substantial question of general public importance and the resolution of which is nothing short of a fundamental political right of the citizens of Pakistan. He said controversy involved in his petitions is time sensitive as the right to currently hold the membership of National Assembly and qualification/disqualification thereof, of the respondents may be frustrated and rendered, meaningless once their tenure expires.
He said that delay in resolution of these questions at hand would only perpetuate the injustice, and breach of the sacrosanct trust placed by the people in the apex court to ensure that only the qualified and worthy individuals hold the membership of National Assembly.-Business Recorder