ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – Islamabad High Court (IHC) quashed terrorism charges against former Prime Minister Imran Khan, according to sources, who has been facing a spate of legal woes since his ousting in April through a no-confidence motion.
In late August, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chief Imran Khan has been booked in a terrorism case on the complaint of Islamabad Saddar Magistrate Ali Javed for threatening a female judge of the federal capital.
According to one of his lawyers Faisal Chaudhry, the court said Khan’s alleged offence did not warrant terrorism charges.
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“The case against Imran Khan, however, will remain intact, that will now be tried in an ordinary court, instead an anti-terrorism court,” Chaudhry said, as ABC news quoted.
“This is actually an order to quash the charges,” another of his lawyers, Babar Awan, said. “It only proves that these are trumped-up charges, and just a tool for political victimisation.”
The charges are related to a speech Khan gave in Islamabad to protest the arrest and alleged torture of his Chief of Staff Shahbaz Gill, where he is accused of “threatening” state officials and promising to mount a legal challenge after Gill was arrested on August 9.
But Khan subsequently explained that his remarks were not meant to be a threat.
[EARLIER: Ex-PM Khan Attends Court Amid Tight Security]
Earlier, Imran Khan arrived at the Islamabad High Court (IHC) amid tight security, expressing displeasure over the heavy deployment of the police outside the court during his hearing of a terrorist case filed against him.
Speaking to reporters, Imran expressed displeasure over the heavy deployment of police and other law enforcement agencies at the court. He wondered who the authorities feared, as they had deployed a heavy contingent of police outside the IHC.
Talking to the media persons after the court decided to indict him in the contempt of court case, Imran told reporters that he wanted to contextualise his statement in the court regarding the woman judge but was not given the opportunity to do so.
Ever since his government was toppled in April, the chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Imran Khan carried out a huge public outreach effort, during which he delivered blistering remarks against his political opponents, state institutions, and local police.