LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Friday disposed of writ petitions of former prime minister Imran Khan seeking quashing of cases against him and permission to attend the proceedings through a video-link facility.
Barrister Salman Safdar, on behalf of Mr Khan, asked the LHC larger bench to pass a stay order against the arrest of the petitioner. He said the caretaker government of Punjab had registered politically motivated cases against the PTI chairman.
He said on each occasion of his (petitioner’s) appearance before a judicial forum, there was a serious threat to his life due to lack of security being provided to him despite his entitlement as a former prime minister.
The counsel said that permitting the petitioner to appear through video link would be cost-effective and viable for the administration of the criminal justice system as there would be no need to deploy thousands of security officials on the occasion of his court appearance.
Rejects petitions of Elahi and Buzdar seeking details of cases against them
Additional Advocate General Ghulam Sarwar Nihang opposed the petition and told the bench that Mr Khan filed a similar petition before the Supreme Court.
Referring to the Supreme Court’s order against the arrest of Mr Khan, he said an unprecedented relief was being granted to the PTI chief by the courts.
Justice Ali Baqar Najafi, who headed the bench, interrupted the law officer and cautioned him against commenting on the apex court’s orders.
Barrister Safdar said he was not seeking any relief but the protection of fundamental rights.
After hearing both sides, the bench reserved the verdict.
Later, the bench issued a written short order disposing of the two petitions of the PTI chief.
Justice Aalia Neelum, Justice Tariq Saleem Sheikh, Justice Anwarul Haq Pannun and Justice Muhammad Amjad Rafiq were the other members of the bench.
The larger bench also disposed of the petitions of former chief ministers Parvez Elahi and Usman Buzdar seeking details of the cases against them.
Published in Dawn, May 27th, 2023