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Islamabad High Court accepts Imran, Bushra, Qureshi’s appeals for hearing – World News Network

Islamabad [Pkaistan], February 27 (ANI): The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has accepted the appeals of former Prime Minister Imran Khan, his spouse Bushra Bibi, and former Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi against their convictions in the cipher and Toshakhana cases, as reported by Dawn.
The court has requested the record related to the trial court proceedings by March 7.
Imran Khan and Shah Mehmood Qureshi were sentenced to 10 years in jail in the cipher case by a special court, while in the Toshakhana reference, Imran Khan and his spouse received 14 years jail term each.
According to Dawn, the division bench comprising IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb heard both appeals.
Barrister Syed Ali Zafar and Barrister Salman Safdar represented Imran Khan in the cipher case.
Barrister Safdar argued that there were serious anomalies in the procedure adopted to convict the PTI leaders in the cipher case. He highlighted that the Special Court (Official Secrets Act) bypassed the law and deprived Imran Khan and Mehmood Qureshi of remedies available in law for their defense, as per Dawn.
According to the appeal, the arrest of Imran Khan and the hearing for remand took place in the “most objectionable, clandestine, and secretive manner” on Aug 16 last year. The prosecution did not share the complete record, and the judge indicted the PTI leaders hastily.
Despite the illegalities, the appeal mentioned, an IHC bench scrapped the proceeding twice. Yet Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain concluded the trial without complying with the mandatory procedural requirements, it claimed.
The appeal claimed that the ex-PM and his legal counsel “extended all the cooperation” to the trial court and did not seek unnecessary adjournment. But the judge did not ensure a fair trial, as “the proceedings were hurried through by the court in breakneck speed for reasons known only to the court itself”. It argued that the trial was “concluded in less than 20 days”.
While one of the defense counsel could not appear before the court as he had to rush to Lahore for dental surgery, the court-appointed state counsel for Imran Khan and Mehmood Qureshi despite strong objections by the PTI leaders.
Both leaders requested the court to make a call to their lead counsel to seek his assistance during cross-examination, but the trial court refused to wait for him.
The appeal claimed that the cipher case trial was then shifted to a “secret room” and concluded within a very short span of time.
The IHC division bench also took up applications seeking the suspension of their sentences till the final adjudication of the main appeals against their conviction. The bench overruled the objections to the petitions raised by the registrar’s office.
In the Toshakhana case, Barrister Zafar argued that an accountability court convicted the ex-PM and his spouse without even giving them the right to cross-examine prosecution witnesses.
While issuing notices to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in the cipher case and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in the Toshakhana reference, the high court later adjourned further proceedings on the appeals and applications till March 7.
Meanwhile, the IHC bench comprising Chief Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Tariq Mehmood Jahangiri issued notice to the NAB on the plea of the PTI founder and his wife seeking post-arrest bail in the 190 million pounds corruption case.
Advocate Sardar Latif Khan Khosa, appearing on behalf of the petitioners, stated that the trial court decision that dismissed the bail applications of the petitioners was ‘erroneous’ and requested the IHC bench to accept the bail pleas. (ANI)


Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from a syndicated feed of ANI; only the image & headline may have been reworked by News Services Division of World News Network Inc Ltd and Palghar News and Pune News and World News


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