IHC disqualifies Khawaja Asif in Iqama case



ISLAMABAD, April 26 (TNS): In a major development, the Islamabad High Court on Thursday disqualified Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif under Article 62 and 63 of the Constitution for holding an Iqama (work permit) of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

On April 10, a larger bench of the high court had reserved judgment on a petition by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Usman Dar. The larger bench, comprising Justice Athar Minallah, Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani, had directed the parties to submit written arguments.

The petitioner, Usman Dar, who had contested against Asif during 2013 general elections in the NA-110 constituency from PTI’s platform, had argued that Asif hid the fact of holding an Iqama, or a foreign work permit, in his nomination papers. Dar, through his counsel Sikandar Bashir Mohmand, nominated Asif, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and the National Assembly secretary as respondents and sought relief under Article 199(1)9b)(ii) read with Article 63(1)(f).

Earlier, Mohmand had argued before another larger bench that Asif in his nomination papers mentioned himself as a businessman whereas his Abu Dhabi Iqama proved that he was and still is an employee of a company in a different capacity.