LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) allowed police on Thursday to interrogate incarcerated PTI Chairman Imran Khan in six more cases related to the May 9 riots.
The decision followed the addition of new sections of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) in the FIRs dealing with offences of abetting mutiny in the armed forces and waging war against Pakistan.
The investigating officers filed separate applications before the court in each case, saying they needed to interrogate Imran Khan after the addition of offences under sections 121 (waging or attempting to wage war or abetting waging of war against Pakistan), 131 (abetting mutiny, or attempting to seduce a soldier, sailor or airman from his duty) and 146 (rioting) in the FIRs.
Other offences under sections 120, 120-A, 120-B, 121-A, 505, 153, 153-A, 153-B and 107 of PPC were also added to the cases, including the attacks on Askari Tower, Shadman police station, and torching of PML-N offices in Model Town.
Court upholds objections on dismissed bail pleas, PTI chief’s lawyer challenges hurdles to meeting client
Ejaz Ahmad Buttar, the ATC judge, said in his observations: “Request of the Investigating Officer being apt is accepted under the law.”
The judge had previously allowed a joint investigation team (JIT) to interrogate and arrest former prime minister Imran Khan in a case pertaining to the attack on the corps commander’s house in Lahore on May 9.
The DIG (Investigations) Lahore, who is the convener of the JIT’s, had sought permission to interrogate and arrest the PTI chief in an FIR registered by police regarding the attack on Jinnah House, which also serves as the corps commander’s residence.
A Lahore High Court division bench upheld office objections on the petitions of the PTI chairman challenging the dismissal of his pre-arrest bail pleas in seven cases related to the May 9 violence.
The registrar’s office objected to the petitions’ maintainability, saying the documents furnished by the petitioner had not been attested.
Barrister Salman Safdar appeared on behalf of Imran Khan. The bench comprised Justice Waheed Khan and Justice Sultan Tanvir Ahmad.
The bench asked the PTI chief’s counsel to file the petitions again in line with requirements cited by the registrar.
On Aug 11, judge Ejaz Ahmad Buttar had dismissed Imran Khan’s pre-arrest bail plea in the May 9 cases for non-appearance.
Mr Khan’s counsel had requested the court to excuse him from personal appearance, citing his imprisonment in Attock since Aug 5.
The judge said that Imran Khan’s counsel had failed to point out any specific legal provision upon which an exemption from personal attendance in a pre-arrest bail case can be granted after imprisonment.
The judge ruled that Mr Khan’s application was not maintainable and dismissed bail petitions in all cases with similar observations.
Lawyer files petition
A lawyer for Imran Khan filed a petition in the Lahore High Court on Thursday against several officials of Attock jail for not allowing him to meet his client.
Barrister Salman Safdar pleaded that he had sought permission from jail officials to visit Imran Khan, but they dismissed his request ‘unlawfully’.
Mr Safdar said he needed to seek instructions from his client regarding multiple cases pending before the courts. He asked the court to order the jail authorities to allow him to meet the PTI chief.
Published in Dawn, August 25th, 2023