A petition was on Thursday filed with the election commission of Pakistan to disqualify opposition leader Imran Khan after a woman lawmaker from his party accused him of harassing her and other women leaders.
The 64-year-old cricketer-turned-politician faced heavy criticism and pressure to quit after Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) lawmaker Ayesha Gulalai in a televised press conference on Wednesday said he has been sending “inappropriate and explicit messages” to her and other women workers of the party.
Raja Basharat, a lawyer, filed a petition with the Pakistan election commission seeking Khan’s disqualification for the “shameful” allegations of harassment by Gulalai.
Ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) had a field day against Khan following the disqualification of Nawaz Sharif in connection with the Panama Papers scandal. PML-N leader Hanif Abbasi demanded that Khan should be immediately disqualified for “immorality” and a case should be registered against him. “Whatever I have been saying for the last three years about his character has been proved right and now is the time to take action against him,” Abbasi said. PML-N provincial leader Hina Pervaiz Butt submitted a resolution in the Punjab Assembly for disqualification of Khan.
Pakistan Peoples Party has also voiced serious concerns at the allegations against Khan and demanded a through probe to know the truth. “The matter concerning Gulalai is regrettable. Women never make allegations involving themselves. It should be investigated,” said PPP leader Syed Khursheed Shah. PTI has strongly rejected the allegation and some party women workers have defended Khan. “Gulalai had sought assurance for a ticket in the next elections but it was rejected and now she has come up with allegations,” said PTI’s Shireen Mazari.