Plea seeking SC's suo motu on non-registration of FIR rejected

PTI legal team says 'no left hope in SC'; decides to approach 'Justice of Peace' for redressal of grievances

Hasnaat Malik November 09, 2022


The Supreme Court’s Human Rights Cell on Tuesday refused to entertain an application filed by a relative of PTI chief Imran Khan, seeking suo motu proceedings over the non-registration of an FIR of the assassination attempt on the former prime minister last week.

The human rights cell asked the PTI lawyers to approach an appropriate forum to redress their grievances, the sources said.

The development was also confirmed by members of the PTI’s legal team who, while lamenting that there was “no hope left” in the apex court, said they have now decided to approach ‘Justice of Peace’ under Section 22-A of CrPC.

The ‘Justice of Peace’ is a judge of a lower court who is authorised to order the registration of FIRs under the said section and can issue directions to the concerned police officials for observance of all legal and requisite formalities.

A member of the PTI’s legal team shared that the party will first seek redressal of its grievances via this legal option before filing a petition in the high court.

He admitted that the Supreme Court’s judgment in the Sughra Bibi case presented a “big hurdle” for getting a second FIR registered. However, he pointed out that since the first FIR was based on mala fide, the court could annul anything based on mala fide.


The application before the SC human rights cell seeking the top court’s intervention was moved by Muhammad Zubair Khan Niazi.

It stated that as per the constitutional right to peaceful protest, the PTI chief was spearheading a long march from Lahore to Islamabad when on the fateful day of November 3, “reckless and straight firing was made targeting him in broad daylight through a well-orchestrated scheme and with the intention to assassinate the head of the single largest political party of the country”.

"All injured were transported to the respective hospitals and the following day an application was given by the undersigned for registration of an FIR against the accused persons to the SHO Police Station City, District Wazirabad.”

It said that the application contained all the details as well as the sequence of events leading to the unfortunate incident and the applicant/undersigned nominated three high-level officials who primarily are responsible for “hatching a conspiracy to assassinate” Imran by giving it “a colour of religious fanaticism”.

Read FIR of attack on Imran registered after SC's ultimatum

The actions and statements of these three nominated officials over the last few months quite clearly point towards their involvement in this incident, the application contended.

"Quite unfortunately, the local police despite the passing of four days have not registered an FIR of this assassination plot, which involves sections 302, 324, 109 PPC and 7-ATA on the most popular public figure of Pakistan, which is the legal right of every aggrieved person.”

The application went on to allege that the Punjab police and Inspector General of Police (IGP Punjab), while “acting on the whims of the federal government and the other state institutions”, have not only defied their constitutional and legal obligations but also prejudiced the case of the applicant by “intentionally delaying the registration of the FIR”.

This unfortunate incident was widely covered by the international press as well as the media, and the heads of the states of other countries also condemned this brutal act in the strongest words.

The non-registration of FIR by the Punjab police even after four days has, it added, sent a very negative impression of the judicial and administrative system of Pakistan all across the world.

“The whole nation is pinning high hopes on the honourable Supreme Court of Pakistan to take up this important matter which involves the blatant violation of human and fundamental rights at the hands of the Punjab police.”

Read more Legal ambiguity blankets CJ's observations

The application requested  CJP Umar Ata Bandial to initiate suo motu proceedings over the refusal of the provincial police to register an FIR and direct the concerned officials to register it against the nominated accused persons so as to ensure speedy justice to all aggrieved persons and to meet the ends of equity and fair play.

The plea nominated Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah and military officer Major General Faisal Naseer.

Punjab IG submits report to SC

Earlier in the day, Inspector General Punjab Faisal Shahkar submitted a report to the Supreme Court regarding the delayed registration of the FIR of the incident.

The report maintained that an FIR of the attack had been registered in "compliance" with the SC’s order.

According to the report, the FIR was registered at Wazirabad City police station, under Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997. The apex court was also provided with a copy of the FIR.

Written order

Later, the SC also issued a two-page written order that said that the IG Punjab had informed the court that the FIR regarding of the attempted assassination has not been registered so far.

Also read PM requests CJ for commission to probe attack on Imran

"He (IG) has a duty to act in accordance with the law which necessitates the lodging of an FIR in respect of the commission of a cognizable offence. Let this aspect of the matter be considered in appropriate proceedings tomorrow (Tuesday),” the order said.

However, Justice Yahya Afridi expressed serious 'jurisdictional reservations' over the majority written order wherein the police chief was directed to “act in accordance with law” about the registration of the FIR.

His remarks were part of the written order issued by the apex court regarding a contempt of court case against PTI chairman Imran Khan that was heard by the supreme court a day earlier.

A five-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial and comprising Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan, Justice Muneeb Akhtar, Justice Yahya Afridi, and Justice Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi issued the orders while hearing a contempt of court plea filed by interior ministry against Imran for allegedly flouting a May 25 order of the apex court.


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