- Imran Khan leaves for Islamabad to appear before IHC.
- Two-member bench headed by IHC chief justice to hear Khan’s bail plea.
- Police ban entry of unrelated persons into the IHC.
Security has been tightened around the Islamabad High Court (IHC) ahead of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan’s appearance who has left for the federal capital to secure interim bail in nine different cases.
A heavy contingent of police was deployed around the court while barbed wires and containers are also being placed to ensure law and order in the area.
The police have also banned the entry of unrelated persons into the IHC.
Khan is set to appear before a two-member bench headed by Chief Justice Aamer Farooq, which had warned the former prime minister, of bail revocation over his continuous absence from court, on the previous hearing.
To ensure Khan’s safety, the district administration has made strict security arrangements, while the lawyers and journalists will be allowed to enter courtroom no 1 through a special pass.
Only 15 lawyers will be allowed to accompany Khan inside the court and 10 lawyers from the attorney general and advocate general’s office will be allowed to attend the hearing.
“[We] respect the courts, so will appear [before the court] despite pain and swelling in the leg,” said Khan — who was sitting in a wheelchair to be moved to the car — before leaving for Islamabad.
He said that he was not like “those who create propaganda against the judges” if they don’t get a favourable decision.
Khan further claimed that he had informed the Lahore High Court that a bid was made to assassinate him.
“Once in Wazirabad and the second time in the Judicial Complex on March 18,” he added.
The PTI chief then urged people to take to the streets in a show of solidarity with Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial.
“The mafia is hell-bent against the chief justice,” he said, adding that “the mafia” had divided the Supreme Court (SC) and had been flouting the Constitution.
He also criticised the incumbent government for “running from the elections” which were supposed to be held within 90 days of the dissolution of the assemblies.
On Wednesday, Chief Justice Aamer Farooq, while hearing Khan’s bail pleas in two different cases related to threatening officers of the armed forces and the attempted murder of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Mohsin Shahnawaz Ranjha, observed that the law was very clear and equal for all.
“There was no precedent of exemption from appearance during hearings in a bail petition.”
As per his lawyer Barrister Salman Safdar, Khan skipped yesterday’s hearing due to pain and swelling in his leg. However, after seeing no leniency by the bench, the lawyer assured the court that the PTI chief would appear at today’s hearing even if he did so in an ambulance.
More to follow…