LAHORE: The Anti-Corruption Establishment (ACE) on Friday re-arrested Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf President Chaudhry Parvez Elahi after the court discharged him in a corruption case.
The ACE produced the former Punjab chief minister — who was arrested on Thursday after a week-long police siege of his residence in Lahore — before a district court, seeking his 14-day physical remand in a case registered against him in Gujrat for allegedly taking kickbacks in development projects.
The judicial magistrate discharged the PTI leader in the case terming the allegations against him “not well-founded” as per the ACE investigation. It observed that the matter required further probe.
The court ordered Mr Elahi’s immediate release if he was not required in any other case.
The ACE acted quickly and re-arrested him in another such case registered in its Gujranwala region and shifted him to its office in the district.
Talking to reporters on the court’s premises, Parvez Elahi said he would remain in the PTI and not hold any press conference — a reference to those PTI leaders who recently secured relief in their cases by holding pressers in which they announced quitting the party.
“The is a difficult time but it will pass. I ask the workers to stand firm with the party. I have always been a staunch supporter of Pakistan Army. I have full faith in the judiciary and it is a matter of concern for them to see in which direction the rulers are taking the country to,” he said.
The PTI president alleged that caretaker Punjab Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi was hostile towards him. “Naqvi is behind this injustice being meted out to me. I want to tell him [Mohsin Naqvi] that his bad deeds lead to consequences,” Mr Elahi said, adding that he never made any political case against anyone in his two stints as chief minister.
Meanwhile, the PTI said fake cases were being lodged against Parvez Elahi to force him to leave the party.
Mr Elahi has reportedly been under “immense pressure from powerful quarters” to part ways with Imran Khan in the wake of May 9 riots.
Former minister and PTI leader Moonis Elahi expressed his resolve that he and his father [Parvez Elahi] would continue standing by the party and Imran Khan come what may.
On the other hand, the caretaker Punjab government alleged that the judicial magistrate, who discharged Mr Elahi in the corruption case, seemed politically affiliated with PTI.
“He [judicial magistrate] is sitting on a very sensitive post and dealing with important cases related to FIA and the anti-corruption. His tilt towards PTI is clearly reflected from his hasty verdict and social media pages. His social media profile clearly shows his activities and inclination towards PTI,” the provincial government said in a tweet.
Published in Dawn, June 3rd, 2023