ISLAMABAD: After hearing a petition seeking disqualification of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) head Irman Khan and secretary general Jahangir Tareen for almost a year, the Supreme Court on Tuesday reserved its verdict on the matter.The petition filed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader MNA Hanif Abbasi contended that the two PTI leaders had not declared all assets including offshore companies in nomination papers filed with the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).On Tuesday, Naeem Bukhari, the counsel for the PTI chief, said that he had submitted all relevant documents and addressed points raised by the petitioner and the court. To a court query about the use of 100,000 million pounds, he stated that this amount was balanced in the account of Niazi Services Limited (NSL), an off-shore company owned by Imran Khan, adding that 20,000 pounds from this amount were transferred to the account of his client in July 2007.He said another amount of 22,000 euros was transferred to the account of his client in March 2008 and was withdrawn in 2012, for domestic expenses.Justice Umar Ata Bandial noted that Imran Khan had not declared the euro account in his nomination papers. The counsel argued that his client had transferred the money to Pakistan from the euro account. “Non declaration of assets and income in the nomination paper was a mistake or a deliberate attempt to hide something?” asked Justice Faisal Arab.“It might be a mistake and not a deliberate attempt to hide something,” Bukhari contended. However, he conceded that there were many contradictions in his client’s response on the money trail.“Your task is over. Now we have to determine what side is telling the truth,” Chief Justice Saqib Nisar noted, adding that the court would also ascertain how past mistakes could impact the future.Babar Awan, another counsel for Imran Khan, submitted that his client had declared his London apartment in 2000 through an amnesty scheme, whose record was already made available to the court. On this, the chief justice observed that Khan had declared the London apartment but he did not disclose the offshore company through which the apartment was acquired. “My client did not declare the offshore company because he was neither its beneficial owner nor a shareholder,” Awan responded.In his concluding arguments, Akram Sheikh, the senior counsel for petitioner Hanif Abbasi, stressed that Imran Khan had changed his stance over money trail 18 times over the course of case proceedings. “This is enough to establish that he is not ‘honest and truthful’,” he held.“The benefit of speaking the truth is that you don’t have to remember what you had said earlier,” the chief justice observed.Before reserving the verdict, the chief justice observed that verdicts could not be expected to be given at a day’s notice. He added the court had to unearth the truth and ascertain whether Imran Khan was ‘honest’ in his dealings or not.On Jahanagir Tareen’s offshore company, Akram Sheikh contended that it had neither been declared in nomination papers filed before the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) nor in tax returns. After hearing concluding arguments, the chief justice observed that it seemed that Tareen was the beneficial owner of the offshore company, Shiny View Ltd, which was used to purchase a 12-acre plot of land in London.Justice Umar Ata Bandial noted that the trust deed submitted by Tareen showed that there were two lifetime beneficiaries, including Tareen himself.Published in Daily Times, November 15th 2017.