PTI alleges 'pre-planned' delay in Iddat case verdict

Lawmakers accuse complainant Maneka of 'disrespecting, abusing' former premier Imran

Our Correspondent May 29, 2024
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf lawmakers addressing media outside court in Islamabad on May 29, 2024 after the Iddat case hearing. PHOTO: Screengrab


Following a frenzied courtroom hearing of the Iddat case, involving former premier Imran Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi, the PTI lawmakers termed the Wednesday’s events leading to the delay in the announcement of the case's reserved verdict a "pre-planned" strategy.

PTI Chairman Barrister Gohar Ali Khan, accompanied by other party leaders including Leader of the Opposition in the Senate Shibli Faraz and Member National Assembly (MNA) Ali Muhammad Khan, addressed the media outside the courtroom after today's hearing.

Gohar said the court had initially scheduled to announce the verdict at 9am, but the timing was rescheduled to 10:30am due to the absence of the prosecutor.

Referring to remarks made by complainant Khawar Fareed Man¬eka, former husband of Bushra Bibi, during the hearing, the lawmaker alleged that Maneka used abusive language against PTI founder Imran.

Furthermore, he claimed that the session judge, Justice Shahrukh Arjumand, had been "instructed" not to preside over the case.

Read Court rejects Maneka’s plea for transfer of iddat case to another judge

Gohar added that Justice Arjumand had informed the court of his intention to report the matter to the higher court.

Following the events, the judge wrote to the Islamabad High Court (IHC) requesting the appeals to be transferred to another court.

Shibli Faraz also accused Maneka of verbally attacking ex-PM Imran and claimed that the case was intentionally delayed, asserting that it was "politically motivated". "We are seeking justice from the courts," added Faraz.

Echoing Faraz's sentiments, Ali Muhammad Khan asserted that PTI supremo Imran was disrespected in front of the court.

Referring to the sudden public holiday on May 28 to commemorate Youm-e-Takbeer, Khan noted that the cypher case was supposed to be heard on Tuesday but was postponed due to the unprecedented holiday.

He claimed that like other cases involving Imran Khan, the Iddat case was also "baseless".

"I want to ask [Khawar Maneka] why he chose to pursue the case after five years," Khan added.
Earlier in the day, in a dramatic turn of events, the sessions judge hearing the Iddat case requested its transfer to another court without announcing the reserved judgment, which many believed would overturn the conviction of Imran Khan and Bushra Bibi.

Judge Arjumand left the courtroom after the complainant expressed no confidence in him. The complainant emotionally argued his case, requesting 10 minutes to speak.

An appellate court reserved its decision on the appeals filed by former premier Imran Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi against their conviction in the case concerning their marriage during the iddat period on May 23, announcing that the court would unveil the verdict on May 29.



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