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Reprieve for Imran Khan after Islamabad High Court ruling, former PM also gets two-weeks bail

Imran Khan in court just before his arrest

A division bench of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday ordered not to arrest Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan in any case filed after May 9, reported Samaa TV and ARY News.

The court also granted the former premier bail for two weeks in the Al-Qadir Trust case. The judgment came a day after the Pakistan Supreme Court termed his arrest from the IHC premises “invalid and unlawful”, Dawn reported.

Further, according to Dawn News, the Islamabad High Court, while granting a reprieve to the former prime minister, said Imran Khan should be granted bail if martial law, which is sanctioned by Article 245 of the country’s Constitution, has been enforced in the country for two weeks.

Article 245 of the Pakistan Constitution mandates that the armed forces shall, under the directions of the federal government, defend the country against external aggression or threat of war, and, subject to law, act in aid of civil power when called upon to do so.

However, there are no reports in the Pakistan media suggesting that martial law has been enforced in the country.

A division bench comprising Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb and Justice Saman Rafat Imtiaz heard the PTI chief’s bail plea in courtroom No.3. Dawn NewsTV reported that Imran’s lawyers had also filed four additional pleas urging the IHC to club all the cases against him and direct authorities to provide details of the cases registered against him.

The hearing had initially begun after a nearly two-hour delay, with the media reporting that officials were conducting a security sweep outside the courtroom.

Geo News reported that the hearing was delayed after the judges left the courtroom alleging that “pro-Imran” slogans were raised.

Imran claimed that he was hit on the head during his arrest.

In an informal conversation with journalists at the IHC, Imran said that NAB officials treated him “fine” but also added that he was hit on the head while being arrested.

He further said he was also not able to get in touch with his wife Bushra Bibi.

On violent protests sweeping the country, he said, “How could I have stopped whatever happened? I had already told [you] that there would be a reaction to the arrest.”

“When I was [taken into custody], how could I be responsible?” the former premier asked.

In a video shared on social media by Independent Urdu, Imran further said, “I was sitting in the high court. They had no reason to arrest me. I was abducted.”

“And there, they showed me the warrant for the first time when they took me to jail. This is what happens when the country is governed by the law of the jungle, army carries out abductions without any rhyme or reason. Where did the police go? Where did the law go?” he asked.

“The law of the jungle has been enforced in the country. It seems as if martial law has been declared,” he said.

“When I reached the court yesterday, I found out for the first time that 40 helpless people have lost their lives in this. I did not even know about this,” the former PM added.

Speaking to the media outside the IHC after the break in proceedings due to Friday prayers, PTI lawyer Babar Awan claimed that a police team from Lahore left for Islamabad to arrest Imran in “new cases”.

“There are two to three people in the incumbent administration, who are worried because if Imran Khan is released, their jobs will be in danger,” he alleged, adding that this was why Punjab police had been called to the capital.

Imran’s Lawyer Awan reiterated there were threats to Imran’s life, adding that Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah had also said the same.

Also Read: Shireen Mazari also arrested in Islamabad amid crackdown on Imran Khan’s PTI leadership