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Tuesday April 23, 2024

Judge threatening case: Islamabad court issues Imran Khan's non-bailable arrest warrant

Court orders PTI chairman to appear before it on April 18

By Arfa Feroz Zake
March 29, 2023
Pakistan´s former prime minister Imran Khan (C) gestures as he leaves after appearing before a court in Islamabad. — AFP/ File
Pakistan´s former prime minister Imran Khan (C) gestures as he leaves after appearing before a court in Islamabad. — AFP/ File

A district and sessions court in Islamabad issued on Wednesday a non-bailable arrest warrant for Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan in the case against him for threatening a woman judge.

Judicial magistrate Malik Aman heard the case on Wednesday. 

At the outset of the proceedings, Imran Khan's lawyers requested to retain his bailable arrest warrant in the case, saying the PTI chief has security concerns. "His life is in danger. The Islamabad High Court [IHC] also issued notices for withdrawing security from him," the lawyers argued.

At this, the judge said that no one has appeared on behalf of the prosecution yet and to wait and see what they say.

The court then adjourned the hearing till 11am.

After the break, prosecutor Raja Rizwan Abbasi appeared in civil judge Malik Aman's court and opposed Imran Khan's plea for exemption from today's appearance.

The prosecutor said that Imran Khan is absent and that the bailable warrant should be changed to a non-bailable one. "Even the plea is not signed by him," the prosecutor argued.

The court then reserved its decision on Imran Khan's request for exemption from attendance.

Later, the court issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against Imran Khan and dismissed his request for exemption from today's appearance.

The court ordered Imran Khan to appear before it on April 18.

The charges in this case are related to a speech by Khan in which he allegedly threatened police and a female judge last year after one of his close aides, Shahbaz Gill, was denied bail in a sedition case.

The cricket star turned politician has faced a barrage of legal woes since his ouster in a confidence vote in April last year by a united opposition led by his successor, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

A convicted politician is liable to be disqualified for at least five years under the laws of the land.