Home Latest News PTI to File Reference against IHC CJ for ‘Delay’ in Suspending Imran Khan’s Sentence

PTI to File Reference against IHC CJ for ‘Delay’ in Suspending Imran Khan’s Sentence

Party chief separately files petition in apex court accusing senior judge of ‘bias’ and demanding cases be transferred to either the Lahore or Peshawar High Court

by Staff Report

File photo of PTI chief Imran Khan

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Tuesday announced it will file a reference against Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Aamer Farooq in the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC), shortly after a two-member bench headed by the senior judge refused to suspend party chief Imran Khan’s three-year imprisonment in the Toshakhana case.

In a statement, the PTI Core Committee condemned the adjournment of the case until Thursday (Aug. 24), adding it would file a references against Chief Justice Aamer Farooq “to ensure the independence of the judiciary.” It also urged Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial to take notice of the manner in which the IHC CJ issued his decision.

“The CJP should ensure free trial to PTI chairman under Article 10A,” read the statement, referring to the right to free trial. It also asked the IHC chief justice to recuse himself from the case immediately. “The chief justice of the Islamabad High Court has made law and justice a mere joke. Delay in justice is tantamount to murder of justice,” read the statement, alleging the two-day adjournment was aimed at continuing “revenge and violence” against Khan.

Subsequently, on Wednesday, Khan’s counsel filed a petition in the Supreme Court against the IHC CJ, accusing him of “deep and settled bias.” Claiming he had been detained in Attock jail after being “convicted on a cooked up and fabricated charge after a trial in gross abuse of due process,” Khan’s petition blames the IHC chief justice for keeping him ousted from Pakistani politics.

“More than sufficient incontrovertible evidence is available to establish the deep and settled bias of the CJ IHC towards the petitioner,” reads the petition, alleging Justice Farooq of “endeavoring to do everything to keep the petitioner behind bars with the intent that he be unable to contest the forthcoming general elections and thus be ousted from the politics of Pakistan.”

The petition further accuses Additional Sessions Judge Humayun Dilawar—who sentenced Khan to three years’ imprisonment after finding him guilty of corrupt practices—of “despising” the PTI chief and alleges the IHC CJ facilitated their “common objective” against Khan. “In fact, the hon’ble CJ IHC handsomely rewarded the learned ASJ after their common project had been achieved through the petitioner’s aforesaid illegal conviction,” the petition alleges, referring to a course Judge Dilawar has been undertaking at the Hull University, U.K.

In support of his argument for the IHC CJ’s alleged bias, the petition has claimed the judge did not prevent Khan’s arrest from court premises on May 9, indirectly accusing him for the riots that were perpetrated by the PTI in its aftermath.

The petition has called on the apex court to “transfer all cases, investigation, inquires, trials, in which the petitioner is a party/respondent/accused from the IHC to the Lahore High Court or Peshawar High Court,” claiming these are preferable to the Quetta High Court or Sindh High Court due to distance.

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