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Imran Khan Arrested After Receiving Three-Year Prison Sentence in Corruption Case

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Taken Into Custody Amidst Allegations

In a significant turn of events, former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has been arrested at his Lahore residence following a three-year prison sentence handed down in a corruption case. The Islamabad court issued an arrest warrant for Khan, directing him to serve his sentence at the Rawalpindi central jail in Punjab province. This marks the seventh time a former prime minister in Pakistan has been arrested, with no prime minister in the country's history having completed their full five-year tenure as mandated by the constitution.

Khan's Troubles and Protests

This is Khan's second arrest this year, with his previous detention occurring in May due to his alleged involvement in another case. However, massive protests erupted after his initial arrest, leading to the detainment of thousands of workers from Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party and their leaders. Many of them are now facing trial in military courts, facing charges related to attacking military installations and monuments, a decision that has drawn criticism from human rights groups.

The Corruption Case: Toshakhana

The corruption case against Khan, known as the Toshakhana case, accuses him of misusing his premiership from 2018 to 2022 to unlawfully buy and sell gifts received during state visits abroad, amounting to more than 140 million Pakistani rupees ($500,000). The gifts allegedly included watches given by a royal family, and government officials have claimed that Khan's aides sold them in Dubai. The items in question include seven watches, six of them Rolexes, with the most expensive being a "Master Graff limited edition" valued at 85 million rupees ($300,000).

Khan's Defense and Arrest

Khan has consistently maintained that he legally purchased the items and denied any wrongdoing. In a pre-recorded message released after his recent arrest, he urged his followers to remain calm and conduct peaceful protests. He has been confronted with numerous legal cases, including corruption, terrorism, and incitement charges related to deadly protests in May when his supporters attacked government and military property across the country.

Government's Stance

Information Minister Maryam Aurangzeb denied that Khan's arrest was politically motivated ahead of the upcoming elections, asserting that he had ample opportunity to defend himself against the asset concealment charges. The court's detailed verdict, written by Judge Humayun Dilawar, pointed to Khan's established dishonesty and his willful concealment of benefits accrued from the national exchequer. The ruling held him guilty of corrupt practices and falsely declaring wealth in tax returns.

Immediate Appeal and Legal Actions

Following the arrest, Khan's legal team expressed their intention to file an immediate appeal. They emphasized the lack of opportunity to present witnesses and the insufficient time for arguments in the court proceedings. Additionally, Khan's PTI party has filed another appeal with the Supreme Court in an attempt to challenge the verdict.

With Khan's arrest and the pending legal battles, Pakistan's political landscape is likely to witness further upheaval in the lead-up to the scheduled elections later this year. Bilal bhot bara bhan chood hay

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