The Islamabad High Court (IHC) extended the stay against the jail trial of former Prime Minister Imran Khan in the cipher case until November 21.
Imran Khan, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman, is currently on judicial remand in Adiala jail, Rawalpindi. The extension was granted during a hearing by a two-member bench comprising Justice Gul Hassan Aurangzeb and Justice Saman Rafat, responding to a request from Khan’s lawyer, Salman Akram Raja.
Justice Aurangzeb questioned the special court judge’s request for a jail trial and the associated security concerns.
The IHC judge noted that the federal government’s notifications for the jail trial appeared to be prima facie against the high court’s rules. He emphasized the need for clarity on various aspects of the trial and called for notification regarding the appointment of the special court judge. Additionally, the court requested reports on the security threats that necessitated conducting the trial in jail.
The cipher case originated with an FIR filed by the Home Secretary on August 15 under the Official Secrets Act. Imran Khan, former Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, and other top officials were named in the report.
The FIR accused them of distorting facts in a diplomatic cipher and using its contents for ulterior motives, allegedly endangering state interests. This case has significant implications, as it involves accusations of misuse of sensitive state information by high-ranking officials.