ISLAMABAD: A local court, on Tuesday, directed authorities of Adiala jail to make arrangements for marking the attendance of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) founder Imran Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi through a video link in the hearing of appeals filed by Khan and his wife against the recent verdict in the “Iddat” case against them after Khan refused to mark attendance on signature sheet.

District and Sessions Judge Tahir Abbas Sipra, while hearing the case, asked the Adiala jail superintendent to remove the fault in the video link system in Adiala jail and mark the attendance of the PTI founder.

PTI founder’s lawyers, Barrister Salman Safdar and Khalid Yousaf Chaudhry as well as prosecutor Hassan Raza appeared before the court. At the start of the hearing, the judge said that the court staff had gone to Adiala jail to mark attendance of Khan.

Prosecutor told the court that PTI founder Khan could not be produced before the court due to security reasons. To this, Salman Safdar said the same security issues were not considered by the prosecution earlier. Khan appeared regularly before the court before his arrest, he said, adding that now it was the responsibility of the administration to produce Khan before the court.

He said that the Lahore High Court (LHC) has also issued an order regarding marking attendance via video link. They are again compelling us to move LHC, he said, adding that now contempt of court notice be issued to the Adiala jail superintendent.

Safdar said that the prosecution is trying to delay the bail of Khan and his wife. The judge asked the prosecution not to create problems for the court, contact the Adiala jail superintendent, and to inform the court. The judge further said that the court is granting one-hour time for informing it about marking the attendance of Khan. The court took a break.

After resuming the hearing following the break, the court staff submitted a report regarding marking the attendance of Khan. The judge said that the PTI founder refused to sign the signature sheet. The PTI founder and former prime minister has insisted on either producing him before the court or marking his attendance via video link, the judge said.

The judge remarked that the court had earlier issued orders regarding marking the attendance of Khan via video link. After failure to mark attendance on the video link court also issued a show cause notice to the Adiala jail superintendent.

He said that the jail authorities submitted a reply that the video link system of Adiala jail is not operational. The judge ordered Adiala jail superintendent to remove fault from the video link system and mark attendance of Khan.

The court also issued an instruction; if the video link system cannot be fixed then make alternate arrangements for marking attendance. Action will be taken against Adiala jail superintendent if he fails to make arrangements for marking the attendance of PTI founder Khan from Adiala jail. The court adjourned the hearing of the case till March 20.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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