JIT decides to nominate PTI chief in GHQ attack case

After nomination, Rawalpindi Police will have authority to arrest former premier from Lahore or Islamabad

Imran Asghar July 06, 2023
PTI supporters clash with police during a protest against Imran’s arrest in Lahore. PHOTO: AFP


A high-level joint investigation team (JIT) probing incidents related to the May 9 violence has decided to nominate former premier and PTI Chairman Imran Khan in two terrorism cases including an attack on the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi.

With the addition of new sections in the cases, the PTI chief will be charged with plotting and incitement to violence, after which his arrest is also expected.

In an unprecedented show of vandalism, protesters allegedly belonging to the PTI ransacked the government and military infrastructure, including the Lahore corps commanders residence, also known as Jinnah House, on May 9 following the arrest of the former premier by the paramilitary Rangers on the orders of the National Accountability Bureau in a graft case from the Islamabad High Court premises.

Sources told The Express Tribune that the JIT investigating the May 9 happenings met on July 4. The huddle decided that Imran will be nominated as accused in two terrorism cases, including an attack on the GHQ for which a case has been registered at AR Bazaar Police Station. Former Punjab home minister Raja Basharaat and others have already been nominated in this case.

The other case related to the May 9 riots had been registered at New Town Police Station wherein PTI workers were accused of attacking the building of an intelligence agency near Faizabad. It decided to nominate the former premier as accused in this case too.

Sources maintained that the JIT meeting also included officers probing the May 9 cases and were asked about updates on the investigation, arrests, preparation of challans and identification parade.

They noted that a decision was taken to further add terrorism sections in the cases related to attacks on the GHQ and defence and security installations.

Sources stated that after nominating the PTI chief in the two cases – the attack on GHQ and security installations – Rawalpindi Police will have the authority to arrest him from Lahore or Islamabad.

It was said that Imran will be named in the cases in the light of confessional statements of the previously arrested accused and witnesses and that these admissions could be presented as evidence in courts against him.

Sources recalled that earlier former federal minister Shehryar Afridi was arrested for allegedly being involved in the attack on GHQ.

This will be the first time that the PTI chairman will be nominated in a case from Rawalpindi.

Following the riots, the army had declared May 9 as a black day and warned that any further attack on it or state institutions or any law enforcement agency would be dealt with with full force.

The government launched a massive crackdown against the PTI leaders, arresting and re-arresting the former ruling party leaders over their alleged involvement in the May 9 riots.

As a result, several PTI stalwarts quit the party while others distanced themselves from Imran.


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