The Islamabad High Court (IHC) allowed on Wednesday Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leaders Shehryar Afridi and Shandana Gulzar to go home, suspending the MPO orders issued against both, Aaj News reported.

IHC Justice Babar Sattar took up their pleas today, and ordered their release.

However, the court barred them from going outside the capital’s limits, while also asking them to refrain from issuing statements on mainstream and social media till the case was going on.

The court also said it will indict city Deputy Commissioner (DC) Irfan Nawaz Memon and a senior superintendent of police (SSP) for contempt of court.

On Tuesday, Justice Babar issued show cause notice to the SHO of Margalla Police Station, Islamabad, the DPO, City Zone, Islamabad, SSP (Operations), Islamabad, and the District Magistrate for criminal contempt of court for abuse of authority to obstruct dispensation of justice and cause diversion to the course of justice.

They were also directed to file written replies within 24 hours as to why they should not be punished by the court for obstruction of justice, undermining the fundamental rights of a citizen, and bringing into disrepute the authority and ability of the justice system to dispense justice in accordance with the law and the Constitution.

Meanwhile, the IHC today has also sought responses from those summoned as per the court order.

Background on arrests

On May 30, Afridi was arrested from outside Adiala Jail shortly after his release under 3-Maintenance of Public Ordinance (MPO). The PTI leader was arrested by Rawalpindi Police under Section 3 of the MPO Ordinance 1960, which enables the government to arrest persons “acting in any manner prejudicial to public safety”.

He was initially arrested after protests that transformed into violence following the arrest of PTI Chairman Imran Khan on May 9.

Despite the IHC overruling his detention orders on June 6, Afridi was being kept in a death cell at Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail, following which the IHC warned the capital police officials of contempt proceedings.

Similarly, PTI’s Shandana was arrested on August 9 by Islamabad Police without citing any reason.

Sher Afzal Khan Marwat, the counsel for PTI chief Imran Khan, said that the ex-MNA was “abducted at gunpoint” by Islamabad Police.

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BK Aug 16, 2023 06:09pm
Finally someone in the judicial system woke up! I hope others will too and will stay awake. I really feel bad for the people who are behind bars in bogus cases. At this point it does not matter what their political affiliation is. Pakistanis deserve justice and it should be served to all starting from our beloved COAS, Bajwa, NS, SS, Zardari, and Rana Sanaullah
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Lubna Aug 16, 2023 10:06pm
The judicial system is a joke now. The powerful elites have made sure that no middle class live in this country
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