The Islamabad High Court (IHC) barred the electoral watchdog on Thursday from taking action against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leaders Imran Khan and Asad Umar till August 22 in the case pertaining to the notices issued to them during the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) local government polls, a private TV channel reported. The ECP had issued notices to the former prime minister and planning minister for violating the code of conduct and participating in a rally during the local bodies elections held in March this year. The PTI leaders had challenged the notices of the ECP in the IHC. During proceedings, the high court extended the order to prevent the ECP from taking action against Imran Khan and Asad Umar until August 22. Acting Chief Justice of the IHC Aamir Farooq heard the case, in which the assistant counsel told the court that PTI’s lawyer Barrister Ali Zafar could not appear in the court today due to his busy schedule. The court adjourned the hearing till August 22 due to the unavailability of the counsel. On June 14, Imran and Umar were given a ‘last chance’ to present their arguments on the issue of a fine imposed by a district monitoring officer (DMO). The assistant counsel for the two leaders appeared before a three-member committee chaired by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja. During the hearing, the assistant counsel said that the matter is pending in the IHC, to which the CEC replied that “this case has nothing to do with the case of Islamabad High Court”, and added that the ECP is merely hearing an appeal filed against a fine imposed by DMO. “The election commission is not punishing you that you would have to refer to the Islamabad High Court. If the appeal is withdrawn today, the election commission will end the matter,” he added.