Monday September 25, 2023

PTI panel devises strategy for Imran’s release

Shah Mehmood Qureshi says SC to be moved against IHC verdict today

By our correspondents
May 10, 2023
PTI Vice-Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi speaking to the media. — AFP/File
 PTI Vice-Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi speaking to the media. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Tuesday devised a comprehensive strategy to secure safe and early release of Imran Khan during its seven-member emergency committee meeting.

PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi had summoned the committee meeting immediately to review the situation in the wake of arrest.

Qureshi interacted with the committee members Senators Saifullah Khan Nyazee, Azam Swati, Ijaz Chaudhry, Murad Saeed, Ali Amin Khan Gandapur and Hassan Niazi.

According to the party’s Central Media Department, Qureshi said a meeting of the senior leadership and emergency committee was convened to review the situation from all angles and announce a comprehensive action plan. He said Imran’s arrest was completely unjustified and unacceptable.

He said the PTI will hold peaceful but vigorous protests across the country to ensure the release of its chairman as soon as possible. He claimed that the Islamabad High Court (IHC) was raided to detain Imran Khan despite the fact that Imran had offered voluntary arrest in his statement before appearing in the court.

“Detention of Imran Khan is fascism and it is condemnable to attack the Islamabad High Court during biometrics and injure lawyers,” he remarked and made an appeal to the chief justice of Islamabad High Court to issue an order for his immediate recovery and appearance in the court. Qureshi said the entire nation was deeply concerned about the health and safety of Imran.

“There is a lot of anger in the entire nation against the abduction and torture of the PTI chairman and the PTI will register its strong protest without taking the law into its own hands. We will fight this battle through political and legal means for the safe recovery and release of the chairman,” he noted. The PTI vice-chairman made it clear that the schedule of the rallies released by Chairman Imran Khan was intact. “We are turning all these things into peaceful unity rallies. I appeal to all organizations to continue their preparations. All workers should remain peaceful and determined. We will win this war morally and politically,” he said.

In a video message, Qureshi has said the PTI will challenge the Islamabad High Court’s decision on PTI Chairman Imran Khan’s arrest before the Supreme Court of Pakistan today (Wednesday).

He said people’s reaction to Imran Khan’s arrest was natural as the arrest was unwarranted. He said Imran Khan had said before leaving for Islamabad that he would court arrest if there were warrants for it. There was no reason for resorting to violence, breaking glasses, manhandling lawyers and arresting PTI activists.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court Bar Association Tuesday condemned the arrest of PTI Chairman Imran Khan.

In a statement, President Abid S Zubairi and Secretary Muqtedir Akhtar Shabbir said the arrest, which occurred on the court premises, had raised serious questions about respect for the fundamental rights and impartiality of NAB/law enforcement agencies.

They also condemned the assault and torture perpetrated by the law-enforcement agencies on the lawyers during the entire episode that violated the sanctity of the court.

They said the arrest represented a clear infringement of the principles of democracy, freedom of expression and the right to dissent. They also condemned the violence being perpetrated and asserted that it was a fundamental right to peaceful protest but no one should take law into their hands.

They also urged the government and law-enforcement agencies to uphold the rule of law, adhere to the principles of democracy, and provide a fair and unbiased judicial process to former prime minister and refrain from using state institutions as tools for political persecution and instead focus on fostering an environment of inclusivity and respect for human rights and law.