Politics

Imran Khan’s Judicial Remand in Cipher Case Extended Until September 26

The judicial remand of former Prime Minister and chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Imran Khan, in connection with the Cipher Case, has been extended by 14 days, as decided by a Special Court on Wednesday. This court was established under the Official Secrets Act, catering to high-profile and sensitive cases.

Khan's previous 14-day judicial remand concluded this past Tuesday.

For security considerations, Attock Jail was designated as the official court venue. This was announced in a formal notification from the Ministry of Law. Special Court Judge Abul Hasnat Zulqarnain presided over the hearing held within the premises of the Attock Jail.

It's essential to highlight that the Islamabad High Court (IHC) is currently contemplating a change of trial venue for the Cipher Case. Khan’s legal team has petitioned for the trial to move out of Attock Jail. However, as of now, the appellate court is yet to announce its final verdict on this matter.

Nine members from Khan's legal team were granted permission to enter Attock Jail. Simultaneously, a team from the Federal Investigation Authority (FIA), assigned to probe the Cipher Case, was also present within the jail's boundaries.

Prior to the court proceedings, Advocate Salman Safdar, representing Khan, spoke to the media outside Attock Jail. He emphasized the various petitions still under consideration, with Khan’s bail application being the most crucial. Safdar expressed his dissatisfaction with the prosecution, stating they were not facilitating the court's process. "Keeping Imran Khan in Attock Jail without any valid reason is unwarranted," Safdar remarked.

In a related development, following the completion of his judicial remand, PTI Vice Chairman and former Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi appeared before the court under the Official Secrets Act. Qureshi was informed by court staff that Judge Zulqarnain had gone to Attock Jail for another hearing. The staff relayed that Qureshi's attendance would be noted, and pending the judge's permission, he might be sent back to jail.

Seeking clarity on the ongoing proceedings, Qureshi inquired about the developments inside the jail and the status of his bail application. The court personnel apprised him that Khan’s case was the primary agenda for the day, and Qureshi’s bail hearing would likely take place the following day.

Special Court Judge Abul Hasnat Zulqarnain announced an extension to Shah Mahmood Qureshi's judicial remand in the same case, aligning it with Khan's, to end on September 26.

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