On Tuesday, a district and sessions court in Islamabad issued a bailable arrest warrant for Imran Khan, the Chairperson of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), in the case of him threatening a female judge during a public speech. The prosecutor, Raja Rizwan Abbasi, informed Judicial Magistrate Malik Aman that the court had summoned Imran in person and that his plea for personal exemption had been rejected.
Abbasi urged the court to issue a non-bailable arrest warrant for Imran, citing that bailable warrants had already been issued in the past. He also questioned whether other accused individuals were treated the same as Imran. Abbasi stated that appeals were filed on behalf of Imran for the warrants, but he had not appeared in court in person.
Imran’s lawyer, Faisal Chaudhry, informed the sessions court that several bail pleas in various cases were underway before the Islamabad High Court (IHC). Chaudhry also contended that the PTI chief could not walk properly due to a bullet injury in his leg, and added that the court had to ensure his security.
The judge stated that Imran’s plea to be exempted from appearing before the court had been rejected, to which the lawyer said that a new plea must be filed. The report of the implementation of the warrant was submitted to the court, with Imran’s lawyer, Ali Bhukhari, informing the court that Imran no longer resided in Bani Gala and that his warrants should be served to his Zaman Park residence instead.
Later, the lawyers filed a request for Imran’s exemption from the day’s hearing. After hearing the arguments, the court issued a bailable warrant for Imran and directed him to submit surety bonds worth Rs 20,000. The court also instructed the concerned authorities to send the warrant to Zaman Park. The hearing was adjourned until May 25.
The case against the former prime minister was registered on August 20, 2022, with Margalla police station in the federal capital over his remarks at a rally in F9 Park where he warned Additional District and Sessions Judge Zeba Chaudhry and police high-ups of dire consequences for what he called their “biased” attitude towards his party. Imran alleged that Judge Zeba knew that incarcerated party leader Shahbaz Gill was tortured, but she did not release him on bail. The former premier was booked in a terrorism case on the complaint of Islamabad Saddar Magistrate Ali Javed for threatening the additional sessions judge.
It is important to note that while Imran had been pardoned in a previous contempt case after he had tendered an apology, a similar case had been filed against him and was still pending before the sessions court. Therefore, the court’s recent decision to issue a warrant for his arrest adds another layer to the ongoing legal battles Imran is facing. The situation is a reminder of the importance of holding individuals accountable for their actions, regardless of their status or position.