Imran Khan gets relief from SC in Quetta lawyer’s murder case

PTI Chairman Imran Khan pictured among security personnel at Islamabad High Court on May 12, 2023.. - APP
PTI Chairman Imran Khan pictured among security personnel at Islamabad High Court on May 12, 2023.. – APP
  • The apex court has summoned Imran Khan for the next hearing on August 9.
  • PTI chief’s petition against the murder case was heard by a 3-member bench of the Supreme Court.
  • Khan sought quashing of the FIR in the senior lawyer’s murder case.

Islamabad: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan got another relief on Monday as the Supreme Court (SC) restrained the police from arresting the former prime minister till August 9 in connection with the murder of senior lawyer Abdul Razzaq Shar in Quetta.

The ousted prime minister, who was ousted in a no-confidence vote last April, has a petition pending in the Supreme Court against his nomination in a case related to the shooting of Shaar in Quetta in June.

Lawyer Shar was shot dead on June 6 by unidentified men on three motorcycles while on his way to the Balochistan High Court (BHC).

A First Information Report (FIR) was registered against Khan and others in Quetta under murder, Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) and other provisions on the complaint of lawyer Siraj Ahmed, son of the slain lawyer.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) Attaullah Tarar held the PTI chairman “directly responsible” for the assassination, claiming that the targeted killing was related to the treason case against Imran under Article 6 of the Constitution, which Sher was pursuing.

A three-judge bench comprising Justice Yahya Afridi, Justice Mazhar Ali Akbar Naqvi and Justice Musarat Hilali directed Khan to appear before the court on August 9.

At the start of the proceedings, the PTI chief appeared before the court as directed by the bench on the previous hearing.

However, due to his absence, arguments could not be made on behalf of the complainant’s counsel.

Meanwhile, the Advocate General of Balochistan requested the court to order the former prime minister to appear before the investigating officer (IO) in the case.

To this, Justice Naqvi asked why the PTI chief needed to join the probe.

Justice Afridi then directed the public prosecutor to take instructions on the reason for including Khan in the investigation and to explain the same to the court on the next hearing before the counsel for the complainant.

Later, the court adjourned the hearing till August 9 on the request of the complainant in the case.

Khan had moved the Supreme Court to quash the FIR naming him in the murder of lawyer Shar. Apart from bail in the case, he also sought quashing of the Balochistan High Court’s (BHC) decision to dismiss a similar petition.

However, a two-member SC bench comprising Justice Ijazul Ahsain and Justice Ayesha A Malik rejected Khan’s bail plea and refused to suspend the BHC order without hearing other parties in the matter.

The court held that a two-judge bench of the apex court cannot suspend the order passed by a two-judge bench of the High Court, in which the PTI chief was directed to approach the Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) to decide the matter before a three-judge bench.

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