Imran files defamation suit against TV channel, Dubai-based businessman

ISLAMABAD         -          Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Imran Khan on Saturday said that his lawyers in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have filed a defamation case against Dubai-based businessman Umar Farooq Zahoor, Geo TV and anchorperson Shahzeb Khanzada for airing a programme that PTI’s alleged involvement in the sale of Toshakhana gifts. Former prime minister Khan first talking to Twitter and latter in a statement issued by PTI said that his lawyers led by Hassan Shad have now filed criminal defamation (libel and slander) proceedings under UAE law against Geo News, its anchorperson Shahzeb Khanzada and “fraudster” Zahoor. Similarly, he said that his team of lawyers led by Fasih-U-Din have filed a demand notice to the private TV and its owner Mir Shakil-ur-Rehman in the US. “Disinformation and fake news culture of GEO and its handlers would be dealt with in courts.” Last month, Zahoor had appeared on Geo News programme ‘Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Sath’ and accused the PTI government of selling him an expensive Graff wristwatch for $2 million. The watch was gifted to ex-premier Khan by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman and the PTI chief had retained it from the Toshakhana (state treasure house). The businessman also claimed that he had bought the watch through former advisor to the prime minister on accountability Mirza Shahzad Akbar and Farah Gogi, a close friend of PTI chief Imran Khan’s wife Bushra Bibi and the payment was made in cash. Later in November, Farah sent a legal notice of Rs 5 billion damages to Zahoor, the TV channel and the anchorperson for airing the programme. On October 21, the Election Commission of Pakistan had disqualified Khan for holding the parliament seat for making “false statements and incorrect declaration” in the Toshakhana reference.

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