Friday June 14, 2024

Islamabad court says Shahbaz Gill not well, orders another medical examination

Islamabad Police had sought 8-day extension in Shahbaz Gill's remand

By Arfa Feroz Zake & Waqar Satti
August 19, 2022

ISLAMABAD: An Islamabad court Friday ordered another medical examination of PTI leader Shahbaz Gill, saying his "condition is not well".

The court issued the order which was reserved earlier today after the police sought an 8-day extension in his physical remand in a sedition case filed against him at the Kohsar Police Station over anti-army remarks issued on television.

"Shahbaz Gill's condition is not good, he should undergo a medical examination again," the court said, and ordered authorities to keep him at the Pakistan Institute of Medical Science (PIMS) till Monday.

Rejecting the plea of Gill’s lawyer that the two-day remand granted on August 17 has been completed, Judicial Magistrate Raja Farrukh Ali Khan said the remand has not even started yet and directed the prosecution to submit a medical report at the next hearing.

“Shahbaz Gill is an asthma patient, conduct medical tests,” the judge said.

Earlier, the PTI leader, with an oxygen mask put on, was taken from the PIMS and produced in court under heavy security arrangements.

‘Gill fell sick after court order’

During the hearing, Special Public Prosecutor Raja Rizwan Abbasi said that when Gill was admitted to the hospital a medical checkup was conducted to assess his health.

"The investigation officer can carry out a medical check-up without a court order. It is not written anywhere that if a suspect is ill he/she cannot be given to police on physical remand," Abbasi argued.

The prosecutor said that the jail doctors told the Islamabad High Court (IHC) that when the suspect was brought to the prison he was fine and the medical report was normal.

The doctor told the IHC that Gill fell ill when the court granted his physical remand, Abbasi contended and sought an extension in his remand.

During his arguments, Gill's counsel Faisal Chaudhry claimed that the medical report says his client was subjected to torture.

"You have seen his medical condition. This is a genuine issue," he said.

This case is fixed before the IHC on Monday, he added, and opposed the police's request for an extension in remand.

‘Fit and healthy’

Earlier, a PIMS medical board declared the PTI leader “fit” and “healthy” and able to be discharged anytime.

As per the report, 10 different medical tests and x-rays were conducted on the PTI leader at the hospital and all of them were declared “clear”. Sources said that the report did not find any torture marks.

On Wednesday, a district and sessions court ordered Gill — who was behind bars since August 9 — into police custody for a further 48 hours. However, PTI challenged the case in the Islamabad High Court.

Following the court ordering the remand extended, the PTI leader’s condition started to reportedly deteriorate and after an hours-long drama, he was shifted to PIMS from Adiala Jail.

IGP Islamabad ordered to investigate torture claims

The IHC on Thursday directed the inspector general of police (IGP) Islamabad to submit a detailed report regarding the alleged torture of Gill in police custody, and the controversy that took place at Adiala Jail over the custody of the accused.

The court also allowed Gill’s lawyers to meet him at the health facility where he was undergoing medical treatment.

IHC Acting Chief Justice Aamer Farooq presided over the case and allowed Gill’s lawyers to meet him after they said they were restrained from meeting their client earlier Thursday morning.

The judge also issued a show-cause notice to the Adiala Jail administration taking him into custody later than the ordered time.

The PTI lawyers requested suspension of the remand order, but the IHC judge extended it to Monday and adjourned the hearing to the same date.