The London-centric arm of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), headed by Imran Khan, has found itself amidst a turbulent fundraising debacle after launching a £1 million legal campaign to pool funds.
Amidst these allegations, the party’s core legal team has strongly detached itself from this endeavour, voicing strong concerns over the fundraising methods and motives of the UK group, accusing them of capitalizing on PTI chief Khan’s release initiatives.
Rashad Yaqoob recently revealed Khan’s mandate for him to propagate his legal challenges at a global level via the Human Rights Legal Aid Foundation (HRLAF).
The organization, albeit newly founded in June 2023, is curiously absent from prior human rights advocacy efforts. Under Khan’s directives, Yaqoob was able to mobilize an adept group of UK-based legal professionals, including noteworthy names like Michael Mansfield, KC, Gareth Pierce, and Ben Emerson KC, to lead the impending legal proceedings.
Internal Discord, Accusations, and Repercussions
Following the emotional plea for contributions from Khan’s UK legal representatives, a shocking revelation was made by Khan’s Pakistani attorney, who proclaimed he had gone into hiding, fueled by allegations of espionage and betrayal within the PTI legal ranks. Sher Afzal Marwat, visibly disturbed by the developments, publicly disclosed on social media the potential threats to his life, attributing it to treachery within PTI’s core circle.
Naeem Haider Panjotha, closely associated with the PTI leader, clarified that Khan hadn’t issued any directives for fundraising for his legal faction, warning followers and well-wishers to be cautious.
In a revealing conversation with this correspondent, Yaqoob mentioned his past representation of other PTI members. Still, PTI’s Zulfi Bukhari categorically denied any affiliations or agreements with the concerned fundraising group.
Barrister Gohar Khan proclaimed the party’s intent to issue notices to individuals or groups illicitly raising funds under the guise of PTI’s chairman.
Yaqoob’s Previous Legal Endeavors
Adding to the complexity, it’s noteworthy that Yaqoob had previously represented Senator Waqar Ahmed Khan and his family in a substantial litigation case against Deutsche Bank related to the posh properties in Billionaires’ Row in North London. This case, involving around £140 million stakes, concluded with Senator Khan facing defeat and consequent repossession of his UK properties by Deutsche Bank.