Imran Ahmad Khan Niazi is a Pakistani politician and former cricketer, born on October 5, 1952. He served as the 22nd prime minister of Pakistan from August 2018 until April 2022.
He is the founder and former chairman of the political party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) from 1996 to 2023 and also played as the captain of the Pakistan national cricket team throughout the 1980s and early 90s.
In a shocking twist of events, the former prime minister was sentenced to 10 years in jail on Tuesday, as confirmed by state media and a spokesman for his party.
This verdict stems from a contentious case linked to a leaked document.
The sentence was issued after a trial conducted within the confines of the jail where Khan has been held since his arrest in August.
The timing of this ruling is significant as Pakistan prepares for elections scheduled for February 8th.
According to a spokesman for the party, “Former prime minister Imran Khan and PTI (Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf) vice-president (Shah Mahmood) Qureshi have been sentenced to 10 years each inside prison in the cypher case.”
The case revolves around the handling of a purported “cypher” message sent by Pakistan’s ambassador to the United States.
That message had alleged Washington’s complicity in a scheme to remove Khan from office in 2022.
With less than two weeks until the polls, millions of people are set to vote in a campaign overshadowed by accusations of pre-vote rigging and significant suppression of Khan’s party.