LAHORE: A Lahore High Court division bench will hear on Tuesday (today) a petition of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) against the formation of a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) by the federal government to look into the Wazirabad attack on former prime minister Imran Khan.

The bench comprises Justice Ali Baqar Najafi and Justice Syed Shahbaz Ali Rizvi.

Punjab PTI president Dr Yasmin Rashid filed the petition claiming that the constitution of the new JIT was against the law and without application of mind as a JIT had already been formed by the elected government of Punjab, which has been investigating the incident.

The petition states that since Nov 3, 2022, when the incident took place, it has remained a provincial subject and whilst keeping the law and order under consideration, the JIT constituted by the provincial government has been exercising its jurisdiction properly and within the confines of the law.

Therefore, the petition apprehends, the JIT made by the federal government on Jan 2 would only hinder the progress of the JIT that is already working.

She contends that an FIR which was requested to be lodged by the aggrieved persons was not registered for some extraneous consideration and now during the presence of the caretaker government in Punjab, the federal government has exercised such arbitrary power which in turn leads to exploitation and is in violation of the fundamental rights.

It says that several people, including Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, are suspects in the Wazirabad attack and it is clear that the new JIT has been constituted by the federal government only to exonerate the minister and others from the incident.

Dr Rashid argues that the impugned notification of JIT is not only illegal and biased, but also based on mala fide, beyond the scope of law and the federal government`s jurisdiction.

Published in Dawn, January 31st, 2023

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