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Saturday, May 18, 2024

US, UK nationals & Romita Shetty funded PTI

Fawad Chaudhry said overseas Pakistanis raised funds for the PTI and the ECP had acknowledged their narrative that it does not come under “foreign funding”.

Following the verdict of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on PTI’s prohibited funding, interesting revelations on the case are emerging. Earlier, ECP announced that PTI did indeed receive prohibited funds.

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja said that the party received funds from 34 unknown sources and hid 13 accounts from the electoral body. The ECP said that the party, in violation of the Constitution, had received funds from 34 foreigners. The party received funds from the US, Australia, and UAE.

Read more: ECP rules PTI received prohibited funds

According to the key points of the ECP order, PTI has been found to be a beneficiary of donations by Ms. Romita Shetty, a US-based businesswoman of Indian origin. An amount of US$ 13, 750/-donated by Romita Shetty is hit by the prohibition on donations by foreign nationals and in violation of Pakistani Laws. Moreover, it received knowingly and willfully received donations through PTI USA LLC-6160 and PTI USA LLC-5975 US $ 2,525,500/-.

The ECP has also decided to issue a show-cause notice to the PTI to explain why the commission should not seize the funds it received. The commission also said that PTI chief Imran Khan had submitted a “misdeclaration” with the commission.

Is Romita Shetty an overseas Pakistani?

Needless to say, the report of PTI receiving funds from UK and US nationals is being considered as evidence of PTI’s money laundering, especially by its rivals. However, party leaders have clarified, the matter, asserting that the case was of “prohibited funding” and not of “foreign funding” as is being touted.

Following the verdict, PTI leaders have been active on Twitter, defending the party. On PTI receiving funding from foreign nationals, former Federal Minister Fawad Chaudhry said that Romita Shetty’s husband is Pakistani. According to the details, Romita Shetty is the wife of Nasser Aziz Ahmad, a Pakistani-American businessman and the managing director of DA Capital, LLC.

Read more: PTI challenges approval of 11 MNAs’ resignations

Moreover, earlier, in a press conference after the ECP verdict, Fawad Chaudhry said overseas Pakistanis raised funds for the PTI and the ECP had acknowledged their narrative that it does not come under “foreign funding”. He said that the PTI was of the view from day one that the case was related to prohibited funding and not foreign funding.