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Posts wrongly claim Imran Khan has died

Khan appeared in a court hearing today

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Claim: Former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan has died.

Fact: Khan is alive. He was presented in the apex court on 11 May 2023 amid tight security, as can be seen in video footage aired by multiple channels.

Fact or Fiction? 

On 11 May 2023, Twitter user Akku Don (@akku_akku18) posted a photo of PTI Chairman Imran Khan claiming that he had died. 

Soch Fact Check ascertained using reverse image search tools that the photo used by @akku_akku18 in his tweet is from 8 May 2013, when Khan was being transported to the hospital after he fell from a stage during an election campaign rally in Punjab’s capital, Lahore.

The image was carried by numerous media outlets, including international ones such as Express UK, Al Jazeera, and NBC News at the time.

Soch Fact Check had previously investigated the same photo when it was linked to the shooting incident at Imran Khan’s rally in Wazirabad in Punjab in November 2022.

On 11 May 2023, the Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial ordered Khan to be presented in the apex court at 4.30 pm while hearing PTI’s petition challenging Khan’s arrest. 

Multiple media channels aired footage of Khan in which he can be seen walking to courtroom no 1 moments before the hearing resumed. It was also shared by PTI’s verified Twitter account.

The Supreme Court has termed his arrest “unlawful” in the Al-Qadir Trust case and ordered his immediate release. 

A three-member bench comprising the CJP himself, Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar gave these directives. 

The CJP has directed the former prime minister to appear before the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on 12 May 2023, from where he was arrested by Rangers on 9 May 2023. 

A day after his arrest, IHC declared it legal during a hearing at the makeshift NAB court at the Police Lines Islamabad on 10 May. A photo of him sitting on a chair in the court has circulated on social media. The PTI chief’s arrest sparked nationwide protests. 

Virality:

The tweet by @akku_akku18 gained significant traction with 79,800 views, 728 likes and 182 retweets.

The claim was also posted by Carol Rose Patling (@Patlingrose) and White Devil (@Darshan53204677) on Twitter. Their tweets were viewed by 1,366 and 1,440 people, respectively, as of writing time. 

The post by @Patlingrose has Startup Pakistan’s logo on it with the following text juxtaposed on it:

“Breaking
Imran Khan is dead
Press conference can be held by PTI party”

Soch Fact Check did not find any such posts on the outlet’s social media pages. 

A comparison graphic below also shows that the viral photo does not match the design of the social media posts by Startup Pakistan.

Conclusion: Contrary to claims, Khan is alive. He appeared in court on 11 May 2023. 

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