Published On: Fri, Mar 10th, 2023
Published in Category: Lahore

LHC Justice Abid Aziz Sheikh turns down PTI request to restore Imran Khan’s ‘foolproof security’

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LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday turned down Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) request to immediately restore former prime minister Imran Khan’s security on his plea for “foolproof security and permission to mark his attendance into court proceedings through video link”.

Justice Abid Aziz Sheikh presided over the hearing in the case filed by the former premier requesting the court to direct the concerned quarters not to take any adverse action against him and make his arrest till he is provided proper security for court appearances.

As the proceedings commenced, PTI’s counsel Barrister Salman Safdar contended that constitutionally, security is given to former prime ministers, adding the petitioner had been given security till January 18 but was taken back at the arrival of the caretaker setup.

Salman Safdar further argued that the PTI chief had to appear before courts in criminal cases and there are security issues present.

To this, Justice Abid Aziz Sheikh told the counsel that the petitioner is “seeking exemption from personal appearance before the courts”, adding that if this is the case then relevant courts must be approached.

Turning down the “foolproof security” request, Justice Sheikh sought replies from federal and provincial governments by March 13 on the PTI chairman’s virtual appearance plea.

Sharing information from his credible sources, Imran Khan contended in his petition that “he would yet again be targeted during his exposure in the court hearings and appearances”.

The former prime minister submitted that his popularity in the political arena has become a cause of concern for his political adversaries who after the failure of several criminal cases have now resorted to the opinion of “eliminating him altogether for the political scene as final disposal”.

He also stated that since he was ousted from the government, the present regime decided to lodge a series of bogus cases against the him and senior leadership of PTI who were also subjected to torture on the basis of serious charges like sedition and mutiny.

“All state machinery was misused with the sole object of political victimization and score-settling. Being aggrieved by malicious campaign launched against him and senior members by registering baseless and false cases across Pakistan, the PTI decided to protest against incumbent Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) and announced “haqeqi Azadi March,” the petition read.

The ousted premier contended that the assassination attempt was properly planned and executed at the behest of the political adversaries of the petitioner who were of immense popularity.

“The petitioner wishes to fight with politically motivated cases but due to inadequate arrangements he remained unable to attend some hearings physically, the petition added.

Imran Khan, in his petition, also sought strict action against respondents for failing to maintain law and order on court premises during his court proceedings.

The petition further sought “no adverse action and no arrest” until he is provided proper security for court attendance and appearances.