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Imran Khan’s arrest warrant in judge threatening case suspended

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  • Arrest warrant suspended till March 16. 
  • Court had ordered police to produce Khan before it by March 29.
  • Islamabad police team in Lahore to execute arrest warrant. 

ISLAMABAD: A district and sessions court suspended on Tuesday Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan‘s arrest warrant issued against him in the case regarding his controversial remarks against a female judge during a rally in Islamabad till March 16. 

The development came after the former prime minister filed a petition in the court challenging the arrest warrant. His petition was heard by additional sessions judge Faizan Haider Gillani. 

A day earlier, senior civil judge Rana Mujahid Rahim had issued Khan’s non-bailable arrest warrant for repeatedly failing to appear before the court after which a police party from the federal capital flew to Lahore by helicopter to arrest the PTI chairman.

Khan skipped the hearing and filed an exemption plea from physically appearing before the judge, requesting permission for joining the court proceedings virtually via video link.

The court had dismissed the deposed premier’s plea — whose government was ousted from power after a no-confidence motion in April last year — and ordered the police to produce Khan before it by March 29.

Today’s hearing

At the outset of the hearing, the former premier’s legal team — comprising lawyers Naeem Haider Panjotha and Intezar Haider Panjotha — challenged the arrest warrants on Khan’s behalf. 

Imran Khan’s counsel, when presenting their arguments, said the provisions imposed on the PTI chief are all bailable.

Judge Gillani asked if bailable arrest warrants were issued earlier to which the lawyer responded in the negative.

The court directed Khan’s lawyers to fix the relevant documents in the case and provide it again as the judge said he was struggling to understand the documents that had been submitted.

The lawyers argued that Khan is a former premier and it is the government’s responsibility to provide him security. “The government has withdrawn security from Imran Khan,” the PTI chief’s lawyer said.

The judge questioned if there was a letter mentioning the withdrawal of Khan’s security and asked the lawyer to provide it by tomorrow (Wednesday). The judge also commented over the start of the former premier’s campaign.

“Imran Khan appeared in the judicial complex,” the lawyer said.

The government prosecutor, in his arguments, said that Khan was also summoned in the Toshakhana case.

During the hearing, the judge remarked that Khan appeared in the judicial complex but not before the katchehri.

“The katchehri was attacked in 2014, did it shift after that?” inquired judge Gillani, adding that the katchehri did not even shift when Imran Khan was in power.

“Tell me about the PTI’s single legal reform,” he added.

The judge said that Khan can come to the katchehri as he has appeared there before as well.

He further remarked that the court called for Khan to give him copies of the case. “The copies of the case are provided to the suspect in a personal capacity and not to anyone else,” he said.

The prosecutor said whether the sections are bailable or not, they are not related to the warrant.

“Security has been retracted from Imran Khan and this is my case,” said Khan’s counsel.

The judge asked the counsel to provide a letter to the court in this regard.

The lawyer pleaded for a date in March, as Khan’s petition to appear via video link has also been submitted in the Islamabad High Court.

“You know what will happen on video link. I’ll give you two months,” the judge said.

The lawyer said he cannot appear due to personal engagements, requesting the court for Thursday’s date.

After this, the court issued notices to the parties and ordered Khan’s lawyers to produce documents related to withdrawal of Khan’s security.

The hearing was then adjourned till March 16.

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The IHC upholds Bushra Bibi’s request to be transferred from Bani Gala to Adiala Jail.

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Bushra Bibi’s request to be transferred from Bani Gala to Adiala Jail was granted by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday.

The former first lady Bushra Bibi’s application to be transferred from Bani Gala sub-jail to Adiala was heard today.

Details reveal that the Islamabad High Court heard a motion to restore the denied petition about the relocation of Bushra Bibi, the wife of PTI founder, from sub-jail Bani Gala to Adiala.

The application for the reinstatement of appeal was heard by Justice Miagul Hassan Aurangzeb. When state attorney Abdul Rehman entered the courtroom on behalf of the state, Usman Riaz Gill represented the former first lady.

State counsel did not object to the appeal being restored during court proceedings. At the following hearing, the court asked for assistance in determining what conditions must be met for a location to be designated as a sub-jail.

The court also mandated that Bushra Bibi’s medical examination be scheduled. The court subsequently delayed the hearing and gave instructions to fix the appeal for April 22.

Recall that the attorneys for former first lady Bushra Bibi, Barrister Salman Safdar, Usman Riaz Gill, and Khalid Yusuf Chaudhary, had filed an application to restore the dismissed appeal a day ago, but the Islamabad High Court had denied their request to pursue the case.

The petition contended that the traffic gridlock at the Sarina Chowk checkpoint was the reason for the delay in getting to the court.

The attorneys did not purposefully take their time getting to court. They warned that the petitioner would suffer irreversible loss if the petition was not resurrected.

IHC Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb has voiced his displeasure at the absence of attorneys from the court.

According to Judge Aurangzeb, the former first lady would have been imprisoned if Bushra Bibi’s attorneys had prevailed in this case. The attorneys themselves were opposed to Bushra Bibi’s incarceration.

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oath-taking ceremony for the Balochistan cabinet postponed

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The Balochistan cabinet’s oath-taking ceremony, which was supposed to take place at the Governor’s House today (Thursday), has been rescheduled.
The Governor’s House spokeswoman announced that the Balochistan cabinet’s swearing-in event has been postponed. Nevertheless, there was no explanation provided for the ceremony’s postponement.

It is important to note that the 14-member Balochistan cabinet, which consists of two members from the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) and six ministers from the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was set to take the oath of office today, Thursday.

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Senior PML-N leaders want the X ban lifted.

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A veteran party leader and former railways minister, Khawaja Saad Rafique, claimed the caretaker government’s social media ban didn’t help anyone.

Saad Rafique warned his party’s present government to avoid becoming a laughing stock since politics requires political moves.

“Bans and prohibitions come where dictatorship prevails over democracy,” PML-N veteran Javed Abbasi remarked of the social media ban.

“Can we ban matches factories fearing they ignite fire?” he asked. He said, “We scare of truth and try to keep it under the veil.”

He called the PML-N administration cruel for banning free speech.

The Interior Ministry said the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday that X, formerly Twitter, needed to be banned since it violated Pakistani legislation.

Interior Secretary Khurram Agha reported on the high court’s rulings on the social media ban petition for the ministry.

Social networking site X was down for two months in Pakistan when the hearing took place.

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