Sources in the Pakistan government say that Imran Khan, the Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and former Prime Minister, has stopped communicating with Pakistan President Dr Arif Alvi. The two leaders last spoke 10 days ago, and Khan has not responded to the President’s messages since then.
Sources claim that during their last conversation, President Alvi discussed the recent desertion of PTI leaders from the party after the May 9 violence with Khan and advised him to adopt a defensive strategy in the current political situation. Several big names have left the party since then, with at least 35 leaders quitting between May 9 and 23. Khan is reportedly upset with Alvi for not doing enough to save the PTI.
President Alvi belongs to Khan’s PTI and recently signed the Supreme Court (Review of Judgements and Orders) Bill, 2023 into law on May 26. The bill provides the right of appeal under Article 184 of the Constitution, which was not available in the past. Sources claim that Alvi did not consult with Khan before making this move, which was seen as bowing down to the ruling alliance, Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM).
The new law enables appeals against convictions by the Supreme Court, potentially creating an opportunity for former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to challenge his disqualification. Sharif was disqualified in 2017 by a five-member bench of the apex court, but he couldn’t file an appeal as there was no law to challenge the judgment of the top judiciary. The law applies to past verdicts as well.