Imran Khan faces ‘end of the road’ as Pakistan army cracks down – Times of India

ISLAMABAD: Holed up at his fortified home in Lahore’s upmarket Zaman Park, Imran Khan is looking increasingly besieged and isolated as Pakistan’s military instigates a sweeping crackdown against the former prime minister’s political party.
Following unprecedented attacks against military-owned properties and widespread protests after Khan was briefly jailed earlier this month, more than 10,000 people linked to Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek—e-Insaf, or Movement for Justice, have been arrested in police raids. Several prominent leaders are now in jail and more than two dozen PTI stalwarts have quit the party this week.
Publicly the army and the government say they are holding accountable anyone who attacked state-owned property. Behind the scenes, however, there’s a recognition that Khan’s popularity is unmatched and his party must be cut down to size ahead of elections due in October at the latest, according to two people familiar with the military’s thinking.
Khan now risks meeting a similar fate as previous prime ministers who have been jailed, exiled or executed following power struggles with Pakistan’s generals. Although army support was widely credited in bringing Khan to office in the last national election in 2018, his current predicament stems from his attempts to mess with military hierarchy — a red line for Pakistan’s most powerful institution, which has directly controlled the nuclear-armed nation for much of its post-independence history.
For now, “this is the end of the road for Imran Khan,” said Ayesha Siddiqa, a senior fellow at King’s College London and expert on Pakistan’s military. “The question is will they be able to take away his support base?”
Khan’s ability to connect with the outside world and marshal support is already being eroded. On Wednesday, the internet at his Lahore residence was abruptly cut off before a scheduled call with British lawmakers concerned about Pakistan’s deteriorating political, economic and security situation. Police have also compounded most of his armored cars, limiting his movements, Zulfi Bukhari, a close aide to Khan, told Bloomberg News.
On Friday, a news report said Khan and his wife had been placed on a no-fly list and were barred from leaving the country. The former premier survived an assassination attempt late last year.
Pakistan’s military didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Since his ousting as prime minister last year following a parliamentary no-confidence vote, Khan has campaigned relentlessly for fresh elections. He has blasted the unwieldy coalition headed by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif — who is seen as more amenable to the army even though his brother was once ousted in a coup — as a corrupt force of self-serving dynastic parties.
Khan’s charismatic, everyman quality, past cricketing victories and more recent embrace of pious religion — despite his elite upbringing and earlier playboy lifestyle — has seen his popularity soar across Pakistani society, including many of the army’s rank-and-file. An opinion poll published by Gallup earlier this year found that Khan’s approval rating jumped to 61% in February from 36% in January last year, while Sharif’s fell to 32% from 51% in that time.
That poses a major dilemma for the military brass. Khan would win an election by a landslide with no “credible alternative” for the army to back, according to Tim Willasey-Wilsey, a senior associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies in London.
With Pakistan’s more than 240 million people grappling with record inflation and the country on the verge of default thanks to stalled bailout talks with the International Monetary Fund, the military is unlikely to boot out the elected government and take direct control. Pakistan’s last coup leader, General Pervez Musharraf, stepped down as a deeply unpopular and diminished figure fifteen years ago.
Pakistan’s rupee slid to a record-low 299 per dollar this month while dollar bonds are trading at distressed levels. The currency has lost about 20% this year, among the worst performers in the world.
“The army’s problem is that every measure against Imran will add to his popularity,” said Willasey-Wilsey. “It could also lead to divisions amongst the Corps Commanders who will be anxious about alienating the army from the people — the army will doubtless contemplate intervention options short of a coup, including delaying elections.”
Khan’s relationship with the military wasn’t always so fractious. After coming to power he openly conceded that the forces, which enjoy an over-sized defense budget and wide-ranging business interests across Pakistan, had a role to play in governing the country. But that relationship began unraveling in 2021 as Khan’s anti-American rhetoric pushed the country further away from the US as the economy deteriorated, drawing Islamabad closer to Russia and China.
Eventually it was Khan’s attempt to control military promotions that escalated tensions. He publicly opposed then Chief of Army Staff Qamar Javed Bajwa’s choice for the head of Pakistan’s feared spy agency, voicing support for one of his own allies to stay in the role. Bajwa eventually got his way, but the incident sowed the seeds for Khan’s ouster.
Fraught relations
“He miscalculated by seeking once again to intervene and interfere in the business of military appointments — of course that, as in the past, is the one area that the military guards jealously as its prerogative,” said Farzana Shaikh, an associate fellow at London’s Chatham House research institute. “It’s a familiar routine, we’ve been here before. Other parties have also splintered and fragmented under pressure from the military establishment.”
His relationship with Bajwa’s successor, General Asim Munir, was also fraught. As prime minister, Khan had removed Munir from the role of intelligence chief. Khan more recently inflamed matters by personally blaming the recent turmoil on Munir’s desire for power, and on Monday he likened the situation in Pakistan to Adolf Hitler’s rise in the 1930s.
Hours after the government said this week it was considering a ban on his PTI over the attacks on military offices and buildings, Khan struck a more conciliatory tone. He offered to hold talks with Sharif’s administration and the military, saying he is ready to form a committee to talk with “anyone who is in power today.”
“What’s important is there to be a political dialog between everybody,” said Khan’s aide Bukhari. “Then also at some stage, the two most powerful people in the country, the chief of army staff and Imran Khan, have to sit down and discuss a way forward.”
Any such negotiation for Khan will likely now come from a position of relative weakness. Public sympathy for the military has also risen since the attacks on army property and officer’s homes.
In the port city of Karachi, Pakistan’s business hub, massive banners and posters — some covering the entire length of multistory buildings — declare “Long Live Pakistan” and “Long Live the Soldier.” Others feature Munir flanked by his officers. Trade associations have conducted rallies in support of the armed forces, while television and film stars have taken to social media to declare their love and support for the military.
Sixteen people accused of taking part in the violence that targeted army buildings have been handed over to military courts, according to a document shared by the PTI.
The tactics against Khan are “a page out of the military’s usual playbook” in dealing with dissenting politicians and parties, according to Madiha Afzal, a fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington.
“If this is history repeating itself with the military’s assertiveness,” she said, “it’s not looking good for Imran Khan, his party, or for Pakistan’s democracy.”

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Toshakhana Case: Pakistan Police Breach Imran Khan’s Lahore Residence As He Leaves For Court Hearing In Islamabad

Lahore: Over 10,000 policemen launched a major operation at Imran Khan’s Zaman Park residence here and arrested dozens of workers of his party even as the former Pakistan prime minister is in Islamabad to attend a hearing in a corruption case. The police personnel removed barricades from the entrance of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party chief’s residence and removed all camps the PTI activists had erected to protect their leader. During the operation, some 10 workers reportedly were injured and over 30 were arrested. Footages on social media show police beating PTI workers after entering Khan’s residence, where the 70-year-old leader claims his wife Bushra Bibi is also present. Punjab caretaker government information minister Amir Mir told reporters that the police operation has been launched to clear the Zaman Park area.

“Zaman Park had become a no-go area. As many as 10,000 Punjab police took part in the operation to clear it. We had also reports that the members of banned organisations were also hissing there,” he said.

The minister further said a number of PTI workers have been taken into custody. During the operation, Mir said three policemen and six PTI workers suffered injuries.

He said that police had search warrants for Imran Khan’s residence. “The anti-terrorism court had issued the search warrants of Khan’s residence and (only) after that police entered his house,” he said.

The ousted prime minister, decrying the police operation, tweeted: “(As I left for Islamabad to attend Toshakhana hearing) meanwhile Punjab police have led an assault on my house in Zaman Park where Bushra Begum is alone.”

‘Under what law are they doing this’ This is part of the London Plan where commitments were made to bring absconder Nawaz Sharif to power as quid pro quo for agreeing to one appointment.

Khan, in a video message, said the incumbent government wanted to put him in jail at the demand of its exiled leader Nawaz Sharif. “They wanted to hold elections after sending me to jail. They have completely been exposed,” he said.

Today’s action comes as the Lahore High Court earlier on Friday granted a request by Punjab IGP Dr. Usman Anwar to search Khan’s Zaman Park residence as part of an investigation into attacks on police teams, Dawn newspaper reported.

Khan also tweeted the siege of Lahore was not about ensuring his appearance in the court but aimed at imprisoning him and preventing him from leading the PTI’s election campaign.

The PTI leader has been in the crosshairs for buying gifts, including an expensive Graff wristwatch he had received as the premier at a discounted price from the state depository called Toshakhana, and selling them for profit.

Established in 1974, the Toshakhana is a department under the administrative control of the Cabinet Division and stores precious gifts given to rulers, parliamentarians, bureaucrats, and officials by heads of other governments and states and foreign dignitaries.


Khan was disqualified by the Election Commission of Pakistan in October last year for not sharing details of the sales.

The election body later filed a complaint with the district court to punish him, under criminal laws, for selling the gifts he had received as prime minister of the country.

Khan, who has vehemently denied those charges, is set to be indicted in the case.

Meanwhile, Islamabad police have issued a traffic advisory, stating that due to tight security measures around the Judicial Complex in G-11, citizens may face difficulty in traffic movement, leading to inconvenience.

The Islamabad administration on Friday night imposed Section 144 in the capital, prohibiting private companies, security guards, or individuals from carrying weapons. It is mandatory for drivers to carry their vehicle registration documents while driving.


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DNA Exclusive: Analysis Of ‘Toshakhana Gifts’ Theft Case Against Imran Khan

New Delhi: The Zaman Park area of Pakistan’s Lahore has turned into a battleground after defiant supporters of PTI chief Imran Khan engaged in a battle with policemen to prevent them from arresting their leader in the Toshakhana case, resulting in injuries on both sides. Television footage showed police shelling the protesters, baton charging and firing tear gas at them. The law enforcement agencies had to retreat from Khan’s Lahore residence after a High Court order stopped the ongoing police operation till 10 AM on Thursday.

The former Pakistan PM Khan is accused of paying for just part of the goods he took home from the ‘Toshkhana,’ but most items that he took from the government treasure-house were done so without paying for them. Imran Khan reportedly made millions of rupees from the jewel-class watches that foreign dignitaries gave him. 

In today’s DNA, Zee News’ Rohit Ranjan analysed the Toshakhana gifts theft by Imran Khan and other former Pakistan Prime Ministers.

Court summons have been issued to Khan several times but he did not appear before the court and in this case, the court ordered him to be arrested and presented before the court.

The president or prime minister can keep gifts that are less than Rs 30,000 for themselves. More costly gifts, however, are required by law to be kept in the Toshakhana. Pakistan’s two premiers can also keep the pricey presents from Toshakhana by paying a set proportion of their worth as determined by the government.

However, As per the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), the former premier made “false statements and erroneous declarations” about the presents on October 21, 2022. ECP barred him from holding public office for five years.

According to ECP estimates, Khan earned PKR 104.78 million from the presents he kept and sold.

Watch tonight’s DNA for detailed analysis:

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Toshakhana Case: Pakistan High Court Refuses To Suspend Imran Khan’s Arrest Warrant Amid Protests

Islamabad: Pakistan high court on Wednesday refused to suspend Imran Khan’s arrest warrant in a corruption case and ordered the former prime minister to go to the trial court with his petition. Khan, the chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party has been in the crosshairs for buying gifts, including an expensive Graff wristwatch he had received as the premier at a discounted price from the state depository called Toshakhana and selling them for profit. On March 13, Additional District and Sessions Judge Zafar Iqbal issued an arrest warrant for Imran and instructed the police to present him before the courts on March 18.

Khan, the 70-year-old former cricketer-turned-politician, who has been recovering from a gunshot injury from an assassination attempt in Wazirabad last year, has skipped indictment hearings in this case.

Also Read: In-Depth: Toshakhana Case That May Get Imran Khan Arrested Soon

Islamabad high court Chief Justice Amir Farooq ordered Khan to present the petition in the trial court and refused to suspend the arrest warrants.

Lahore’s Zaman Park area has turned into a battleground after 70-year-old Khan’s defiant supporters engaged in pitched battles with policemen on Tuesday to stop them from arresting their leader in the Toshakhana case, resulting in injuries on both sides.

Meanwhile, following a Lahore High Court order, police and other law enforcers withdrew from Khan’s home on Wednesday, putting a halt to clashes that had erupted after police tried to arrest him for not appearing in court in the Toshakhana case.

The upscale area where Khan lives remained under siege on Wednesday as the government sent Rangers to aid police teams who struggled on Tuesday to muscle their way through a ring of enraged PTI supporters to arrest the former premier.

According to Khan, he was facing over 80 different cases in various courts across Pakistan.

Khan was ousted from power in April last year after losing a no-confidence vote, which he alleged was part of a US-led conspiracy targeting him because of his independent foreign policy decisions on Russia, China and Afghanistan.

Since his ouster, Khan has been asking for early elections to oust what he termed an “imported government” led by prime minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Sharif has maintained that elections will be held later this year once the parliament completes its five-year tenure.

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अब ज्यादा देर नहीं बच सकते इमरान! पुलिस टीम की मदद करने के लिए पाक रेंजर्स भी पहुंचे

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पाकिस्तान के पूर्व प्रधानमंत्री इमरान खान को गिरफ्तार करने पाक रेंजर्स भी पहुंचे हुए हैं।

लाहौर: भ्रष्टाचार के आरोपों में अदालत में पेश होने में नाकाम रहे पाकिस्तान के अपदस्थ प्रधानमंत्री इमरान खान को गिरफ्तार करने की कोशिश के तहत लाहौर के जमान पार्क स्थित खान के अवास के बाहर पुलिसकर्मियों के साथ अब पंजाब रेंजर्स की टुकड़ी भी शामिल हो गई है। अपने नेता को गिरफ्तार करने से रोकने के दौरान खान के समर्थकों और पुलिस के बीच हुई झड़प के बाद लाहौर के जमान पार्क इलाके में किसी युद्ध के मैदान जैसा मंजर है, जहां सड़कों पर आंसू गैस के गोले, जले हुए टायर और वाहन का मलबा बिखरा पड़ा नजर आ रहा है। इस झड़प में दर्जनों पुलिसकर्मी घायल हुए हैं।

पुलिस की मदद के लिए भेजे गए पाक रेंजर्स

इस हाई प्रोफाइल इलाके में स्थित अपने घर में बुधवार को इमरान खान नजरबंद रहे, वहीं सरकार ने पुलिसकर्मियों की मदद के लिए रेंजर्स को भेजा है क्योंकि उन्हें गिरफ्तार करने आई पुलिस की टीम पाकिस्तान तहरीक-ए-इंसाफ के कार्यकर्ताओं के साथ झड़प के बाद उन्हें पकड़ने के लिए मशक्कत करती दिखी। PTI कार्यकर्ता और पुलिस के बीच मंगलवार को लाहौर के जमान पार्क इलाके में झड़प हुई। तोशाखाना मामले में गैर-जमानती वारंट जारी होने के बाद इस्लामाबाद पुलिस बख्तरबंद वाहनों के साथ PTI चीफ इमरान को लाहौर स्थित उनके घर से गिरफ्तार करने के लिए पहुंची थी।

Pakistan Latest News, Pak Rangers Imran Khan, Imran Khan News

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इमरान खान के समर्थकों ने पुलिस के खिलाफ मोर्चा संभाला हुआ है।

इमरान पर उपहारों को बेचने का है आरोप
70 साल के इमरान पर प्रधानमंत्री रहने के दौरान मिले उपहारों को तोशाखाना से कम दाम पर खरीदने और मुनाफे के लिए बेचने के आरोप हैं। उन्होंने बुधवार को ट्वीट किया, ‘साफतौर पर ‘गिरफ्तारी’ का दावा महज नाटक है, क्योंकि असली मंशा तो अपहरण और हत्या करने की है। आंसू गैस और पानी की बौछारों के बाद उन्होंने गोलियां चलाईं। मैंने पिछली शाम एक मुचलके पर दस्तखत किया, लेकिन पुलिस उपमहानिरीक्षक (DIG) ने इसे मानने से इनकार कर दिया। उनकी मंशा दुर्भावना भरी है, इसमें कोई संदेह नहीं है।’

इमरान खान के लिए ह्यूमन शील्ड बने कार्यकर्ता
तोशाखाना मामले में इमरान की गिरफ्तारी के अदालती आदेश के अनुपालन के लिए उनके आवास पहुंची पुलिस ने वहां जमा प्रदर्शनकारियों को पीछे खदेड़ा। हालात बिगड़ने का अंदेशा होने पर खान सहित PTI के विभिन्न नेताओं ने पार्टी कार्यकर्ताओं से जमान पार्क में जुटने की अपील की, जहां उन्होंने मानव ढाल का काम किया और इमरान के आवास और पुलिस के बीच खड़े हो गए। पुलिसकर्मियों ने आंसू गैस के गोले छोड़े, लेकिन उन्हें प्रतिरोध का सामना करना पड़ा और पीटीआई कार्यकर्ता वहीं डटे रहे।

Pakistan Latest News, Pak Rangers Imran Khan, Imran Khan News

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पाकिस्तान के पूर्व प्रधानमंत्री इमरान खान ने प्रशासन पर गंभीर आरोप लगाए हैं।

‘हमें किडनैप करके हत्या की कोशिश हो रही है’
इमरान ने ट्वीट किया, ‘कल सुबह से हमारे कार्यकर्ताओं और नेतृत्व को आंसू गैस, केमिकल वॉटर की बौछारों, रबर की गोलियों और पुलिस की गोलियों के हमले का सामना करना पड़ रहा है। अब यहां ‘रेंजर्स’ हैं और उनके साथ लोगों का सीधा टकराव होगा। तटस्थ होने का दावा करने वाले प्रशासन से मेरा सवाल है कि क्या यही आपकी तटस्थता है कि रेंजर्स का सीधे-सीधे निहत्थे प्रदर्शनकारियों और सबसे बड़ी राजनीतिक पार्टी के नेतृत्व से सामना हो रहा है, क्योंकि उनके नेता के खिलाफ एक अवैध वारंट जारी किया गया है और मामला पहले से ही अदालत में है। बदमाशों की यह सरकार उनके नेता का अपहरण और संभवतः उनकी हत्या करने की कोशिश कर रही है?’

‘नवाज शरीफ से किए वादे को पूरा किया जा रहा है’
इमरान ने कहा कि ऐसा लगता है कि सैन्य प्रतिष्ठान नवाज शरीफ से किए गए कथित वादे पूरे किया जा रहा है। उन्होंने कहा, ‘मुझे समझ नहीं आ रहा है कि प्रतिष्ठान और सेना प्रमुख पीडीएम सरकार का समर्थन क्यों कर रहे हैं, जबकि यह सेना की प्रतिष्ठा को नुकसान पहुंचा रहा है।’ इमरान ने कहा कि प्रधानमंत्री शहबाज शरीफ के नेतृत्व वाली पीएमएल-एन सरकार प्रतिष्ठान की बैसाखियों के बिना एक दिन भी नहीं चलेगी। उन्होंने कहा, ‘सेना प्रमुख जनरल असीम मुनीर से संपर्क करने का कोई प्रयास नहीं किया गया है।’ पीटीआई कार्यकर्ताओं और पुलिस के बीच झड़प में कई पुलिसवालों और पार्टी वर्कर्स के घायल होने की खबर है।

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Imran Khan Calls His Arrest Claim ‘Mere Drama’, Says ‘Real Intent’ Is To ‘Abduct, Assassinate’ Him

New Delhi: Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday (March 15, 2023) said that his arrest claim on corruption charges is a “mere drama” and that the real intent behind it is to “abduct and assassinate” him.

“Clearly “arrest” claim was mere drama because real intent is to abduct & assassinate. From tear gas & water cannons, they have now resorted to live firing. I signed a surety bond last evening, but the DIG refused to even entertain it. There is no doubt of their mala fide intent,” he said in a tweet after police arrived at his Zaman Park residence in Lahore to arrest him in the Toshakhana case on Tuesday.

Despite an over eight-hour-long police operation outside his residence, the cops could not arrest Imran Khan in the Toshakhana case due to strong resistance from PTI workers.

Supporters of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman clashed with the police outside his residence to foil his arrest. 

Several policemen and workers of his party were wounded and protests were held in several cities across the country.

Earlier in the day, Khan slammed the Shehbaz Sharif-led government for planning his arrest and said this is all part of a “London plan” to finish all cases against the country’s ex-premier Nawaz Sharif.

In a video message, the cricketer-turned-politician said that an agreement has been signed in London to put him in jail and to make his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf fall.

“This is part of the London plan and an agreement has been signed there to put Imran in jail, make the PTI fall and finish all cases against Nawaz Sharif,” he said in a 2:50-minute-long video.

He also slammed the Police for ‘attacking’ his supporters and using tear gas and a water cannon.

“Nawaz Sharif has been given assurance that I and my party will be attacked and pulled down,” Imran Khan said.


On Tuesday, the 70-year-old had asked his supporters to “come out” to fight for real freedom and continue the struggle even if he is killed or arrested. 

“They (the government) think that after my arrest, the nation will fall asleep. You have to prove them wrong,” he said.

“God has given me everything, and I am fighting this battle for you. I have been fighting this battle all my life, and I will continue to do so,” the PTI chief stated.

“If something happens to me and I am sent to jail or if I am killed, you have to prove that you will struggle without Imran Khan and not accept the slavery of these thieves and of the one person who has been making decisions for the country,” Khan said.

Soon after his speech, protests broke out in Islamabad, Peshawar, Karachi, Faisalabad, Sargodha, Vehari, Peshawar, Quetta, and Mianwali.

Khan has been in the crosshairs for buying gifts, including an expensive Graff wristwatch he had received as the premier at a discounted price from the state depository called Toshakhana, and selling them for profit.

Khan was ousted from power in April last year after losing a no-confidence vote, which he alleged was part of a US-led conspiracy targeting him because of his independent foreign policy decisions on Russia, China, and Afghanistan.

Since his ouster, he has been clamouring for immediate elections to oust what he termed an “imported government” led by PM Shehbaz Sharif.

Sharif has maintained that elections will be held later this year once the parliament completes its five-year tenure.

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Only Gifts Pakistan’s Rulers Left In Toshakhana Were 9 Books; Everything Else Taken Away: Government Report

Islamabad [Pakistan]: The 466-page record of Toshakhana from 2002 to 2023 has been released on the Cabinet Division website. According to it, Pervez Musharraf, Shaukat Aziz, Yousuf Raza Gilani, Nawaz Sharif, Asif Ali Zardari and Imran Khan took away hundreds of gifts as rulers. After the government made public the record of gifts taken from Toshakhana, this issue is being discussed everywhere. From Nawaz Sharif to Imran Khan, all the former rulers left only one thing in the Toshakhana and that is 9 gift books. None of the rulers took these books while going home and later these books were sent to the library. This is the extreme of intellectual and moral depravity and corruption that the necklace, watch and any other gifts were not found in the Toshakhana.

This is the real face of almost all the rulers of this country and the legislation has been resorted to for self-protection. In the civilized world, people are given facilities and privileges in return for taking taxes, but the first thing in Pakistan is that the rich do not pay taxes. 

Also Read: In-Depth: Toshakhana Case That May Get Imran Khan Arrested Soon

Taxes are collected from the pockets of poor people and small businessmen and instead of being spent back on the people, the tax is spent on the luxury of royal officials. 

Pakistani Rulers advise their people to reduce their cup of tea and eat half their bread, but they forgot that the people they are advising to reduce their expenditure, the taxes received due to their purchase fuel the stoves of these rulers` houses. Now this serious joke with the people must stop, all the privileges must be withdrawn from the rulers and elites.

(The above article is sourced from news agency ANI. has made no editorial changes to the article. News agency ANI is solely responsible for the contents of the article).

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Explained: What Toshakhana Case Is Against Imran Khan

The police have surrounded the house of Imran Khan in Lahore.

The police in Pakistan surrounded former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s house in Lahore ahead of his possible arrest in the Toshakhana case. Hundreds of Mr Khan’s supporters gathered outside the house after a police team arrived from Islamabad to arrest him on a court order, according to news agency Reuters. If he is arrested, it will be a big blow for his party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). Mr Khan faces 37 cases across Pakistan, including those filed by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA).

What is the Toshakhana case?

A non-bailable warrant has been issued against Mr Khan, 70, for concealing, in his assets declarations, details of the gifts he retained from the Toshakhana – the treasury where presents handed to government officials from foreign officials are kept. The case is known as the Toshakhana reference case.

Mr Khan is accused of earning $36 million from selling three watches gifted to him. He allegedly never deposited some gifts in the treasury, violating the rule as a Prime Minister in Pakistan is allowed to retain the gifts only after paying a certain amount.

The Islamabad High Court had last week suspended the arrest warrant issued by a district and sessions court against the PTI chairman till March 13.

Other cases against Imran Khan

In January this year, Pakistan’s Election Commission issued bailable arrest warrants against Mr Khan and other top leaders of his party in a contempt case. The case is based on statements issued by top PTI leaders against the poll body and Chief Election Commissioner Sikander Sultan Raja.

The election watchdog had issued notices against them in August and September last year in the exercise of its powers of contempt after the PTI leaders repeatedly bashed the commission and Raja over what they claim is their partisan policy and their alleged favouring of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

He is also in trouble for failing to attend the court hearing of a case linked to protests outside the election commission. PTI workers staged a protest after Mr Khan was disqualified by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in the prohibited funding case last year.

The investigation in the case started in October last year, when an FIR was registered against the former Pakistan PM for allegedly receiving prohibited foreign funding.

According to Dawn, Wooton Cricket Limited owner Arif Masood Naqvi transferred “ill-gotten” money to one of the accounts of Mr Khan’s party. He is accused of violating the provisions of Pakistan’s Foreign Exchange Act by receiving suspicious financial transfers.

Mr Khan is facing another arrest warrant for allegedly threatening a female judge Zeba Chaudhry. The outburst came after the judge approved the remand of Mr Kahn’s aide, Shahbaz Gill.

At a rally in October 2022, charges under Pakistan’s anti-terrorism act were slapped against the PTI chief for his remarks at a rally where he threatened to file cases against his political opponents and top police officials. However, the stringent charges were dropped after the Islamabad high court intervened.

In August last year, the cricketer-turned-politician was accused of violating Section 144 by organising a rally in Pakistan’s capital Islamabad.

Pakistan’s former information and broadcasting minister earlier released a litigation status report, which said that Mr Khan himself is a petitioner in 19 cases that have been filed against government departments and individuals.

The report also said that 21 FIRs are registered against the former PM out of which 11 were registered on a single day – May 25, 2022 – while eight were registered on May 26. The remaining three FIRs were registered on August 8.

Mr Khan has filed two cases against the Election Commission of Pakistan while two are registered against him in the Islamabad High Court, according to news agency ANI.

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Imran Khan Dodges Arrest After Islamabad Police Show Up At His Residence; Addresses Party Workers

LAHORE: A team of Islamabad police on Sunday reached Lahore residence of ousted prime minister Imran Khan to arrest him in the Toshakhana case, but returned after assurance from his legal team that he will appear before the court on March 7. Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) vice chairman and former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said there is no mention of “arrest” in the warrants as an Islamabad sessions court has asked him to appear before it on March 7 in the Toshakhana case.

The 70-year-old cricketer-turned politician, who has been recovering from a gunshot injury from an assassination attempt in Wazirabad last year, has thrice skipped indictment hearings in the case.

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief has been in the crosshairs for buying gifts, including an expensive Graff wristwatch he had received as the premier at a discounted price from the state depository called Toshakhana and selling them for profit.

The court issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against Khan last week and adjourned the hearing till March 7 for his repeated failure to appear before the court.

Also Read: Four Terrorists Wanted In India Shot Dead In Pakistan-Afghanistan Within Weeks

Meanwhile, Lahore police have closed the main road leading to the Zaman Park residence of Khan by placing containers. Riot police and water cannons are currently present near Khan’s residence. His party fears that police may raid Khan’s house anytime. However, it said the party workers will foil any such attempt.

Punjab Inspector General of Police Dr Usman Anwar said in a statement that Punjab police would cooperate with Islamabad police to implement the court’s order regarding Khan’s case. He, however, did not say that police are going to arrest Khan.

“Punjab police will help Islamabad police in implementing the court’s order,” he said.

The Prime Minister’s special assistant on interior Attaullah Tarar told reporters that the Islamabad police went to Khan’s residence to deliver a notice to him to appear before a court in the Toshakhana case on March 7 when he will be indicted in the case.

“Today Imran Khan locked himself in a room in Zaman Park. Khan’s chief of staff Shibli Faraz said he wasn’t at home when the Islamabad police came to deliver a court’s notice. But Khan later appeared from his house addressing the party workers,” Tarar said.

A large number of PTI workers reached the Zaman Park following the news of his possible arrest. “Arrest of Imran Khan is our red line and we will not allow this,” PTI senior leader Shafqat Mahmood said.

As the Islamabad police were present outside his residence to deliver the court’s order, Khan was speaking at the gathering of those workers arrested in ‘Jail Bharo Tehreek’ (court arrest movement) at his residence.

Khan claimed “they” wanted to kill him while on the way to his court appearance. “They have made yet another plan to kill me during a court appearance,” he alleged.

“I will write to the chief justice of Pakistan telling him that 74 false cases have been registered against me. I have a threat to my life from those who are supposed to protect me,” he said, in an indirect reference to the establishment.

“Take an example of criminals like (Prime Minister) Shehbaz Sharif and (Interior Minister) Rana Sanaullah who were involved in killing people and an attempt on his life (in Wazirabad in November last year) ” he said.

Khan also named “Dirty Harry’, a reference to a top ISI officer, for brutal torture of his party leaders and social media activists. “Dirty Harry is a psychopath. He is a sick man. There is a threat to my life from such people,” he said.

In a series of tweets, the Islamabad Police earlier said an operation to arrest Khan was being conducted with the cooperation of the Lahore police.

“Imran Khan is avoiding the arrest. The superintendent of police had gone into Imran’s room but he was not present there. Islamabad Police will transfer Imran Khan to Islamabad under their protection. Law is equal for all. Legal action will be taken against those obstructing the execution of court orders,” the Islamabad police said.

Also Read: ‘Foreign Minister Jaishankar Doesn’t Understand China Threat’, says Rahul Gandhi in London

The Islamabad police said its team is still present in Lahore. IG Islamabad Akbar Nasir said that the court has ordered police to present Khan before it by March 7 after arresting him.

“The Islamabad police team will remain in Lahore till further orders,” he said.

Meanwhile, senior PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry told reporters that Khan is filing a protective bail petition in the Lahore High Court in the attack on Islamabad judicial complex.

Khan was ousted from power in April after losing a no-confidence vote, which he alleged was part of a US-led conspiracy targeting him because of his independent foreign policy decisions on Russia, China, and Afghanistan.

Since his ouster, Khan has been clamouring for immediate elections to oust what he termed was an “imported government” led by prime minister Shehbaz Sharif. 

Sharif has maintained that elections will be held later this year once the parliament completes its five-year tenure.

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Pakistan Police At Imran Khan’s Home To Arrest Him But Unable To Find Him

Imran Khan is accused of failing to declare gifts received during his time in office. (File)


Police in Pakistan said officers on Sunday attempted to arrest former prime minister Imran Khan, who is battling several legal cases as he pressures the government for early elections.

Officers from Islamabad arrived at Mr Khan’s home in Lahore, which was surrounded by hundreds of his supporters, but were unable to find him.

“A team of Islamabad police has arrived in Lahore to arrest Imran Khan to comply with the court orders,” Islamabad police said in a tweet.

“Imran Khan is reluctant to surrender — the Superintendent of Police had gone into the room but Imran Khan was not present there.”

The arrest warrant was issued after Mr Khan failed to appear before the court in a corruption case on February 28.

Imran Khan is accused of failing to declare gifts received during his time in office, or the profit made from selling them.

Government officials must declare all gifts but are allowed to keep those below a certain value.

Imran Khan later spoke to party workers in his Zaman Park house in Lahore, where police remained outside.

“I am being summoned in fake cases and the nation should know about them,” he said.

“It will be a bad omen for the country if the nation does not stand against the corrupt rulers.”

The vice chairman of Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, Shah Mehmood Qureshi, told reporters in Lahore: “We have received the notice from Islamabad police — the notice does not contain any order for the arrest.”

“We will consult our lawyers and follow the legal process”.

Pakistan’s courts are often used to tie up lawmakers in tedious and long-winding proceedings that rights monitors have criticised for stifling political opposition.

Imran Khan, who was shot during a rally last year, has attempted to disrupt politics in the South Asian nation since he was forced out of office in a no-confidence vote in April.

He has been pushing for early polls due no later than October by holding protests, pulling out of parliament and dissolving the two provincial assemblies his party controls in a bid to force the government’s hand.

The nation of more than 220 million is in dire economic straits with runaway inflation, scant foreign exchange reserves and stalling bailout talks with the IMF.

To pull the country out of its spiral, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif is battling to revive the next tranche of a $6.5 billion loan deal sketched with the International Monetary Fund in 2019.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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