LAHORE: The Punjab government on Thursday constituted a five-member joint investigation team to probe the assassination bid on PTI chief Imran Khan and the subsequent registration of the FIR in the case by the Wazirabad police.

Meanwhile, a sessions court in Wazirabad, where the incident occurred, sought a response from the local police while hearing a petition filed by the former ruling party challenging the FIR registered on the complaint of a sub-inspector which did not implicate the three high-profile suspects named by Imran Khan.

The JIT formed by the home department will be convened by DIG (Establishment-II), CPO Lahore, Tariq Rustam Chohan. It has four members: Dera Ghazi Khan Regional Police Officer Syed Khurram Ali; Ihsanullah Chohan, AIG/monitoring, investigation branch; Vehari District Police Officer Muhammad Zatar Buzdar, and CTD Lahore SP Naseebullah Khan. The JIT was formed by the Punjab Home Department at the request of Punjab Police chief Faisal Shahkar.

Court seeks police comments

Separately, the sessions court sought comments from the local police on the petition against the “non-registration” of an FIR on a complaint by its leader regarding the assassination attempt on former prime minister Imran Khan.

Advocate Aurangzeb Marl argued that the police did not entertain the application filed by the petitioner and registered an “illegal FIR on the complaint” of a sub-inspector, Amir Shahzad, when the Supreme Court ordered the IGP to register the case within 24 hours.

He said the FIR lodged by the police was misleading, factually incorrect, and liable to be rejected for the reason that the primary purpose of the police was to bar the registration of an FIR on the complaint of the petitioner.

The counsel asked the court to order the police to lodge a criminal case on the basis of the application filed by the petitioner without further delay. After hearing the arguments, the court issued notices to the respondents for Nov 14 for submission of their comments on the petition.

Meanwhile, lawyers believe that the PTI chairman or other leaders of the party have a legal right to get an FIR registered as per their narration of the facts despite the registration of a case on the complaint of the state.

They refer to a 2014 order passed by a sessions court to the police in a case against then-PM Nawaz Sharif, then-CM Shahbaz Sharif and several ministers over the Model Town incident.

Published in Dawn, November 11th, 2022

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