PTI to Appeal Against ‘Unjust’ Verdict in Imran Khan’s Marriage Case

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has decided to appeal against the trial court’s verdict that sentenced its founder and former prime minister Imran Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi to seven years in prison each in a case related to their marriage.

The party’s legal team termed the verdict as “shameless” and “politically motivated” and said it would challenge it in the high court.

The verdict was announced by senior civil judge Qudratullah on Saturday at the Adiala jail, where Imran Khan has been incarcerated since August 2022 on various charges of corruption and treason.

The judge also imposed a fine of Rs500,000 each on Imran Khan and Bushra Bibi, who were convicted of violating the Islamic law of iddat, which requires a woman to observe a waiting period of three months before remarrying after divorce.

The case was filed by Bushra Bibi’s former husband Khawar Maneka, who claimed that their marriage was “fraudulent” and “illegal” as it was solemnised during her iddat period.

He also accused Imran Khan of “stigmatising” him and his family and “intruding” in his marital life for his “unethical and immoral” objectives.

However, Bushra Bibi denied the allegations and said that her iddat period had ended by January 1, 2018, when she married Imran Khan.

She also said that her divorce from Maneka was finalised on November 1, 2017, and that she had obtained a certificate from the Union Council to confirm it.

She alleged that Maneka’s complaint was “mala fide” and aimed at “harassing” and “humiliating” her and Imran Khan.

Imran Khan also rejected the charges and said that the case was a part of a “conspiracy” to “disgrace” and “defame” him and his wife.

He said that the case was unprecedented in the history of Pakistan and that it was a violation of his fundamental rights.

He also said that he had followed all the legal and Islamic procedures for his marriage and that he had the consent of Bushra Bibi and her family.

He said that he had married Bushra Bibi for her “spiritual guidance” and that he had the utmost respect for her.

The PTI’s legal adviser Barrister Gohar said that the trial court’s verdict was based on “flimsy” and “fabricated” evidence and that it had ignored the facts and the law.

He said that the verdict was influenced by “political pressure” and that it was a part of a “witch-hunt” against Imran Khan, who had challenged the status quo and exposed the corruption and incompetence of the ruling elite.

He said that he expected justice to prevail if the case was heard by a free and fair tribunal.

He also said that the PTI would continue to support Imran Khan and his wife and that they would not be deterred by such “baseless” and “malicious” cases.

The PTI’s spokesperson Fawad Chaudhry also condemned the verdict and said that it was a “black day” for the judiciary and the democracy in Pakistan.

The verdict, he stated, was a "personal attack" on Imran Khan, orchestrated by his political adversaries, particularly Aun Chaudhry. Chaudhry was once a close confidant of Khan before switching allegiances to the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

Chaudhry's role in instigating the case against Khan and his wife was significant, he added. He also suggested that Chaudhry had swayed the judge and the witnesses.

The PTI, he declared, would not stand by the verdict. Instead, it plans to rally its workforce and supporters to voice their dissent.

He further emphasized that the PTI remains undeterred in its pursuit of a "new Pakistan". The party is committed to upholding the rights and dignity of Khan and his wife.

The verdict has sparked a wave of outrage and criticism among the PTI’s followers and sympathisers, who have expressed their solidarity with Imran Khan and his wife on social media and other platforms.

The integrity and impartiality of the judiciary and law enforcement agencies have been called into question, with accusations of bias and partiality against Imran Khan.

There have also been calls for the liberation of Imran Khan and his wife, along with demands for the dismissal of all charges against them.

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