Islamabad. On Saturday, a local court allowed former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan to return without indictment after appearing outside the court premises in a corruption case. However, a clash between Khan’s supporters and security personnel outside the court premises was also witnessed. Security personnel have attempted to arrest him for failing to appear at several previous hearings.
The 70-year-old head of Pakistan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, Imran Khan, has been sent to the Additional District and Sessions Court to attend the proceedings of a complaint filed by the Pakistan Election Commission for allegedly concealing details of gifts in your asset. Statements Judge (ADSJ) Zafar Iqbal will appear in court. After waiting for hours for the former prime minister to arrive in court, Judge Iqbal agreed to his lawyer’s suggestion to obtain Khan’s signature on the attendance record of his vehicle to comply with court orders to personal appearance.
The judge allowed Khan to return after marking his presence outside the Islamabad court complex, where he would be tried in the Toshakhana case. Dawn newspaper quoted the judge as saying: “As the situation stands, the hearing and production cannot go on, so all the people gathered here must leave after marking his presence. There is no need for shelling or stoning, the hearing cannot take place today.”
The judge said that once Khan’s signature is obtained, the date on which he has to appear again can be discussed later. The newspaper said that people inside the courtroom were facing problems due to the effect of tear gas while PTI party workers hurled stones at the court premises. PTI Senior Leader Shah Mahmood Qureshi confirmed to the media that all legal formalities related to court appearance have been completed and Khan is leaving the premises. Therefore, Khan walked away without the indictment of him in the case.
Khan reached the court premises first, but his attempts to reach the courtroom were thwarted due to the deteriorating law and order situation. During the hearing, Khan’s lawyer, Khawaja Haris, said that he has already challenged the admissibility of the case and that it should be decided before the indictment. Earlier, clashes broke out between security forces and Khan’s supporters outside the court premises ahead of Khan’s court appearance.
Islamabad Police Chief Akbar Nasir Khan told the media that Khan’s supporters resorted to violence, throwing stones at police and setting fire to a police post. Tight security was put in place outside the G11 court complex in Islamabad, where Khan appeared.
A large contingent of police was deployed to the area to provide security for Khan. Khan narrowly escaped in November last year. Khan came to Islamabad from Lahore to appear in court. His followers were also in the convoy with him. At least three vehicles from his convoy were involved in an accident on the M-2 highway near the Kalar Kahar area, but no casualties were reported. Khan had appeared before the Lahore High Court on Friday and said he was ready to appear on Saturday before Judge Iqbal, who is hearing the corruption case against him.
Meanwhile, more than 10,000 armed members of the Punjab police launched a major operation at Khan’s Zaman Park residence in Lahore and arrested dozens of his party workers, claiming to have seized weapons and Molotov cocktails, hours after they left. towards Islamabad. During the repression, 61 party workers were arrested and around 10 PTI workers and three policemen were injured. Khan has been in controversy for buying gifts, including an expensive Graff wristwatch that he bought at Toshakhana at a discount and then sold for a profit.
He had received this watch as a gift as a prime minister which was kept in the Toshakhana. Toshakhana, established in the year 1974, is a department under the administrative control of the Cabinet Division. The Toshakhana stores valuable gifts received by Pakistani rulers, parliamentarians, bureaucrats and government officials from other countries, heads of state and foreign dignitaries. Imran Khan was disqualified by Pakistan’s Election Commission in October last year for failing to share details of the sale.
Punjab Police Inspector General Dr. Usman Anwar told a press conference that earlier the police had halted their operation in Zaman Park due to the order of the Lahore High Court and the PSL party. “However, the court did not stop us from taking action against those who attacked the police.
Today we start a campaign at 12 noon. We faced protests from the PTI workers, but we managed to control the situation and arrested 61 workers”. The IGP said 20 rifles, including a Kalashnikov, and bottles of gasoline were recovered from Khan’s residence. (agency)