Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf seeks permission for rallies, meetings with Imran Khan in run up to Feb 8 polls

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The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) filed four petitions with the Islamabad High Court (IHC), seeking a level playing field, permission to hold public rallies and political gatherings, and the facilitation of ongoing meetings between party leaders and imprisoned former Prime Minister Imran Khan in the run-up to the February 8 general elections, according to Dawn. PTI had been denied permission to host workers’ conventions, public meetings, or demonstrations in Islamabad, as per the petition.

“The PTI is being denied a level playing field in different parts of the country to hold conventions, public meetings, rallies and other political activities, which are essentially a requirement for the fulfilment of the political rights guaranteed under different articles of the Constitution,” one of the petitions said, according to Dawn. The four petitions were, notably filed by PTI on Wednesday.

In a separate lawsuit, Imran Khan has asked the court to intervene to allow him to meet with party members Asad Qaiser and Junaid Akbar Khan, senators Aurangzeb Khan and Dost Mohammad Khan, and Ishtiaq Meherban, among others, to strategize ahead of the elections. The petition seeks that the court direct the superintendent of Adiala Jail to preserve Mr Khan’s privacy during talks with his legal team.

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Meanwhile, the Special Court (Official Secrets Act) gave Khan permission to open two bank accounts using biometric verification, reported Dawn. The superintendent of Adiala Jail was ordered by Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain to enable bank personnel to speak with Imran Khan. Khan’s lawyer informed the court that the former prime minister has to activate inactive bank accounts and register new ones in order to run for office in Mianwali and Lahore.

Earlier, Mian Naseer of PML-N objected to Imran Khan’s nomination papers, saying the former PM’s seconder and proposer do not belong to NA-122, which is a legal requirement. There have also been objections filed against the candidatures of PPP’s Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and PML-N Chief Organiser Maryam Nawaz.