General

Imran reaches ATC for hearing of PTV, Parliament attack cases

An anti-terrorism court (ATC) is commenced the hearing of violence cases related to 2014 sit-ins against PTI Chairman Imran Khan.
Judges Kausar Abbas and Shahrukh Arjumand are hearing four cases – attack on the state television building, Parliament and Junejo – against PTI and Pakistan Awami Tehreek leaders.
Imran, whose exemption plea had been rejected by the court on February 23, was absent as the hearing began early morning after assisting defence counsel Shahid Gondal appeared before the court.
The PTI chief reached the court premises after a one-hour recess ordered by Judge Shahrukh Arjumand had ended. Speaking to the media outside the court premises, Imran lashed out at deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif and the Chief Minister of Punjab Shehbaz Sharif.
“Nawaz was caught in Panama, and the chota don Shehbaz Sharif[Shehbaz Sharif] has been caught by China’s regulatory authorities,” he said.
The PTI chairman said that Faisal Subhan, the CEO of Capital Engineering which was awarded the contract for Multan Metro bus project, confessed to the Chinese regulatory authority investigating corruption charges in the project that Shehbaz and his family received hefty kickbacks in their overseas accounts.
“Shehbaz Sharif has spent nine trillion rupees through his chosen bureaucrats like Ahad Cheema,” he said. “The real issue of Pakistan, today is, that will this mafia continue to loot the public’s money that should be spent on clean drinking water projects, health, and education?”
Imran’s legal counsel, on February 15, had submitted two pleas to the anti-terrorism court seeking acquittal and exemption from appearance. His legal counsel had pleaded the court to take up the acquittal plea before the indictment of his client
The PTI chief was issued summons on January 31. He had later appeared before the court at the last hearing. Judge Arjumand had heard the case regarding injuries sustained by SSP Asmatullah Junejo’s in an attack in the Red Zone during the PTI-led sit-in.
Imran had termed the cases ‘undemocratic,’ adding that holding a public gathering was not terrorism. The ATC judge had remarked that the cases will be handled according to law.
The casesIn August 2014, Khan and Tahirul Qadri took to streets in Islamabad against alleged rigging in 2013 general elections and Model Town sit-in. The protest had continued for 104 days.
During the sit-in, the protesters beat up SSP Asmatullah Junejo on Constitution Avenue when they attacked the Pakistan Television (PTV) headquarters and the parts of the Parliament.
A case had been filed against Khan, Qadri and others for torturing SSP Junejo and five other police officers.
The PTI chief had pleaded the court to transfer the cases to civil court however the request was rejected on December 11, 2017.