ISLAMABAD - Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi has constituted a larger bench to hear Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Usman Dar’s petition seeking disqualification of Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif for concealing his Iqama.

The three-member IHC larger bench comprising Justice Aamer Farooq, Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb will take up Dar’s petition on Monday (today).

Earlier, IHC judge Aamer Farooq had requested the IHC chief justice to form a larger bench to hear the petition.

The PTI leader has sought disqualification of the federal minister for foreign affairs on the grounds that Khawaja Asif had concealed facts that he was an Iqama holder, legal adviser of a company in the UAE and his recent labour card was issued on June 29, 2017.

Dar has moved the petition through his counsel Sikandar Bashir citing nominated Asif, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and the secretary National Assembly as respondents.

The petitioner has contended that he was a candidate for the NA-110 seat from Sialkot on a ticket of the PTI in 2013 general election.

The petitioner’s counsel mentioned in the petition that on the basis of the information and facts that have recently become known to his client and the documents bearing signatures and photographs of the respondent No 1 (Asif) available with him, he considered it his national duty and lawful obligation to institute a petition under Article 199(1)(b)(ii) against the respondent No 1 as he was not entitled to hold the office of the MNA nor that of the federal minister and he is disqualified under the Constitution.

Dar has requested the court to initiate quo-warranto inquisitorial proceedings in this regard requiring the respondent to explain that under what authority of law he was holding public office.

The petitioner said that Asif was a full-time employee of an Abu Dhabi-based company, Int Mech & Elec Co LLC (IMECL) and continuously employed since July 2, 2011.

The petitioner has attached some documents with the petition on the basis of which he claimed that Asif remained a full-time salaried employee of the company on various positions including ‘legal adviser’ and ‘special adviser’.

The petitioner said that against his employment, Asif was entitled to receive 35,000 UAE Dirham as salary and 15,000 AED as monthly allowances that were being received and currently receivable being an MNA as well as the foreign minister of the country.

The petitioner has contended that Asif never disclosed this source of income in Pakistan consequently he was no more ‘Sadiq’ and ‘Ameen’. Before his recent employment, Asif had also been an ‘Iqama’ holder previously from May 9, 2007, till May 8, 2010. The UAE ministry of labour also issued ‘labour card’ to Asif on June 29, 2017, which is valid till June 28, 2019.

“In his nomination papers for 2013 general election, Asif mentioned his occupation as a businessman while the employment contract reveals another story,” the petition said.

The petitioner has argued that the respondent intentionally concealed this information from the public, the Federal Board of Revenue in his tax returns and in violation of Representation of People Act (ROPA) 1976.

The petitioner said that Asif has disclosed in his wealth statement an amount of Rs6,820,964 as foreign remittance but that cannot be related as Asif did not mention this amount as salary.

The PTI leader has prayed to the court to disqualify Asif as the member of National Assembly under article 62 and ROPA 1976.