Pakistan Supreme Court rules Imran Khan's arrest illegal, calls for immediate release
The Pakistan Supreme Court on Thursday declared the arrest of former Prime Minister Imran Khan “illegal” and called for the immediate release of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief who was arrested by the country anti-corruption watchdog on graft charges.
A three-judge bench consisting of Pakistan Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar and Justice Athar Minallah, had ordered the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) –who had arrested Khan on Tuesday—to bring him before the country’s apex court.
Hearing Imran Khan’s plea for relief, the top court bench blasted the NAB for arresting the former Premier from the premises of the Islamabad High Court on Tuesday, where he had arrived to appear for a hearing in a case against him.
The bench asked the anti-corruption watchdog that it should return Imran Khan to the Islamabad HC and let the court decide his fate.
Chief Justice Bandial reprimanded the NAB for arresting Khan from the court premises without the permission of the registrar.
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Justice Bandial asked why Khan was arrested by the NAB when he had already surrendered to the court…”then what does arresting them even mean?”
Imran Khan has alleged custodial torture by the NAB and said that the agency did not even let him use the washroom and also claimed that he was injected with something that would induce a slow heart attack.
Imran Khan, a cricketing legend and one of the most popular Prime Ministers Pakistan has witnessed in recent times, was arrested on Tuesday by the NAB.
Following Khan’s arrest, violent protests erupted across Pakistan as the PTI supremo’s supporters hit the streets and clashed with the police and the Army.
In Lahore, rapid supporters of the former Pakistan cricket team captain– who remains wildly popular among a portion of the country’s population despite being ousted from power— set ablaze the home of Pakistan Army’s corps commander while in Rawalpindi, the protesters laid siege to the army general’s headquarters.
Khan’s supporters have threatened to intensify protests across the country if the PTI chief is not released immediately.
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