Citing “disciplinary issues”, Khawaja Haris, the lead lawyer for PTI, has opted to discontinue representing PTI chief Imran Khan in various court cases. Following Haris’s departure, senior lawyer Latif Khosa, among others, will represent Khan, especially in the Toshakhana case set for a hearing in the Islamabad High Court. Insiders reveal that Haris’s decision came after the PTI’s move to confront IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq aggressively.
Haris had advised against objecting to the judge assigned to hear Imran Khan’s plea against his prior conviction in the Toshakhana case. Yet, other team members, disregarding Haris, challenged the IHC CJ’s role in reviewing Imran’s appeal against the trial court’s verdict. This interference in Haris’s decisions led to his dissatisfaction and ultimate decision to return all case files related to the PTI chief.
Background of the Legal Dispute
Recently, the PTI called on the IHC CJ to step back from the Toshakhana case against its leader. It also expressed its intent to file a complaint against the judge, fiercely criticizing the decision to delay Khan’s plea. In subsequent developments, the PTI Core Committee accused Justice Farooq of potential bias. The PTI chief made further allegations against Justice Farooq in a Supreme Court petition, seeking to shift his cases from the IHC to other high courts.
Previously, Khan had engaged Haris for representation in various matters, including the Toshakhana and National Accountability Bureau law changes. Earlier this month, the PTI chief was penalized under Article 174 of the Elections Act, 2017 with a three-year prison term and a fine. He was also barred from participating in the upcoming elections. Khan’s contention in his appeal is that the ruling is flawed and should be overturned. The initial verdict asserts that Khan engaged in “corrupt practices” by misreporting assets acquired as gifts from the Toshakhana in consecutive years.