Imran Khan has formally challenged his jailing and conviction, seeking suspension of sentence and release until an appeal is decided.
Khan, who is currently imprisoned in Attock jail, about 88 kilometers from Islamabad, said the ruling is “not sustainable” and “liable to be set aside.”
He was sentenced to three years in prison by an Islamabad court last week in a case involving failure to declare foreign gift purchases and sales in his declaration to the Election Commission of Pakistan.
The plea, according to Khan’s lawyer Shoaib Shaheen, said the verdict was passed “with the pre-disposed mind” of the trial court judge to convict and sentence the appellant “irrespective of the merits of the case.”
“This is a slap in the face to due process and fair trial and a gross travesty of justice,” the petition read, requesting that the verdict be overturned, and Khan be acquitted of the charges.
Khan met with his attorney in jail on Monday after a local court directed the prison administration to permit the meeting.
“I have just held a meeting with Khan sahib (Mr). I will tell the details in a press conference shortly,” Naeem Haider Panjuhta later stated on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter. “His (Khan) spirit is high, and he has told me to convey his message that he will not bow, come what may.”
The prison authorities, the lawyer said, kept the former prime minister in a “small room” and did not provide him with B-class facilities, which he is entitled to as a former high-ranking politician.
Meanwhile, Khan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) opposition party says he will continue to serve as its chief despite being convicted.
The PTI core committee on Tuesday passed a resolution, appointing Khan as the party chairman “for life,” according to a statement.
A party meeting also decided to challenge a set of recent laws, including the approval of new census results which could delay the next general elections, and amendments to the country’s Official Secrets Act.
The party insisted that the next elections must be held within the Constitutional period of 90 days after dissolution of the lower house of parliament.
Since being removed from power last year, Khan has been campaigning for snap general elections, which are due later this year.
On May 9, he was arrested over some of the many corruption allegations he faces, which he denies and says are politically-motivated.
In response, there were violent protests across the country, including attacks on state and military installations. Thousands of workers and leaders of his party have since been detained, and numerous senior deputies have also broken away.
According to the government, over 2,000 PTI supporters and leaders are jailed for attacking military installations, while the PTI claims the figure is approximately 10,000.
Khan also survived a shooting last November.