- Warrant is suspended till March 13
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday suspended the non-bailable arrest warrant issued last week against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan by a district and sessions court in the Toshakhana reference till March 13.
Earlier, IHC reserved its verdict in the case.
Imran had challenged the order of district and sessions court which upheld the non-bailable arrest warrant for the PTI chairman.
PTI chairman’s lawyer Advocate Ali Bokhari requested the IHC to fix the case for the hearing today.
As the hearing began, the court gave 30 minutes to Imran’s legal team to tell it when the PTI chairman will appear before the court.
Ali Bukhari and Qaiser Imam, Imran’s lawyers, urged the court to cancel their client’s arrest warrants.
However, the court remarked that the warrants were not issued for arrests but to frame charges against the former PM in the Toshakhana case.
Session court adjourns hearing
Meanwhile, an Islamabad district and sessions court adjourned the hearing on Tuesday of the Toshakhana case against former prime minister Imran Khan, noting that it seemed like Imran would not appear in court today as well.
On Monday, the former PM had failed to appear before the court which heard his plea challenging the arrest warrants issued against him.
Speaking to media, PTI leader Asad Umar said another assassination attempt on Imran could take place during a court appearance “and this is why he is skipping hearings”.
“Other than this concern, he has no problem in fighting the cases.”
The case relates to the Election Commission of Pakistan alleging that Imran had not shared details of gifts he retained from the Toshaskhana and proceeds from their reported sales.
During the hearing this morning, Additional District and Sessions Judge Zafar Iqbal asked the PTI chief’s lawyer if his client will not appear in court today as well. Imran’s lawyer Sardar Masroof replied that he was unaware of Imran’s appearance in court.
ECP’s lawyer Hasan requested the court to adjourn the hearing till March 9 as the PTI chief is due in the Islamabad High Court.
Instructing Imran’s lawyer to submit his power of attorney in court, the judge adjourned the hearing till Tuesday afternoon.
‘Another assassination attempt’: Asad Umar
An attempt on Imran Khan’s life failed in November 2022 and “we have confirmed news that his life is still in danger”, said Umar.
“Another assassination plot is being devised and as per details, this attempt will be made during Imran’s visit to court.”
According to Umar, Imran was being dragged to the courts to ensure the success of next assassination attempt.
“When Imran went to attend previous hearings, the security arrangements collapsed hence we decided that skipping hearings is less dangerous for him than assassination.”
“My 76 cases and increasing rapidly include terrorism, blasphemy and sedition. In sedition case, neither the officer is named nor institution identified,” the PTI Chairman said in a tweet on Tuesday.
“This is what happens when a bunch of criminals are imposed on a nation by those who are devoid of intelligence, morality and ethics.”
Imran moves IHC
Last month, the judge had issued non-bailable arrest warrants for Imran and adjourned the hearing till March 7 (today). Later, the former PM had approached the court for the cancellation of the arrest warrants.
However, the court rejected Imran’s plea on Monday and upheld the arrest warrant issued for the PTI chairman.
According to the written order, the accused has not challenged the said order at any forum. The accused was in a position to appear in this court on February 28 after his appearance in different courts but he wilfully avoided appearing in this court, the order says.
It says that a warrant shall remain enforced until it is cancelled by the court which issued it, or until it is executed as per Section 75 (2) CrPC. The warrant has been issued for the appearance of the accused in the trial and he is not present in the court even, the order says.