Imran Khan sent to 14-day judicial remand in Al-Qadir corruption case

Islamabad: A Pakistani accountability court on Monday sent former Prime Minister Imran Khan to 14 days of judicial remand in the Al-Qadir Trust corruption case. The court had rejected the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) plea for an extension of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman’s physical remand.

The development came after an NAB team visited the former PM in the Adiala Jail, where the hearing took place, and interrogated him for around two hours in connection with the corruption case, reported Dawn.

Imran was arrested again by the NAB on November 14 in the Al-Qadir Trust case and was handed over to the watchdog on physical remand. His wife Bushra Bibi and his legal team appeared before the court on Monday during the hearing.

Imran’s counsel Sardar Latif Khosa said that physical remand was unnecessary in the case and accused the NAB of engaging in ‘political engineering and political vendetta’. He also said that the government manipulated the watchdog frequently for its own gains.

The Al-Qadir Trust case pertains to Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi, who allegedly obtained billions and a large amount of land from Bahria Town Ltd for legalising Rs 50 billion that was identified and returned to the country by the UK citizen during the PTI government.

The PTI chairman was arrested from the premises of the Islamabad High Court in the case earlier this year but was released after the Supreme Court declared the arrest unlawful. However, he was again ‘arrested’ during imprisonment by the NAB in the Al-Qadir case.

Former interior minister Rana Sanaullah had accused the ex-PM and Bibi of accepting Rs 5 billion and hundreds of kanals of land for protecting the real estate firm in a money laundering case.

Meanwhile, Imran is also accused of misleading the federal Cabinet by concealing facts related to the settlement agreement, as it is said that the money supposed to be deposited in the national exchequer was ‘dishonestly’ adjusted in the recovery of Bahria Town Karachi’s (BTK) liabilities.

Pakistan court orders Imran’s open trial in jail

A Pakistani court has ordered the open trial of jailed former prime minister Imran Khan inside the jail premises, which will be open to the media and public. The special court in Islamabad said that Khan’s trial on charges of leaking state secrets will start afresh this week, his lawyer said, according to Reuters news agency.

The court’s order was in response to the documents submitted by the government which sought the trial inside the jail premises citing threats to his life.

“Threat assessments, particularly in the present case, where one of the accused is a former prime minister cannot be disregarded lightly by this court,” the order stated. The open trial will be held at Adiala Jail premises, about 34 km from the capital Islamabad, where Khan has been jailed since the end of September.

Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain said that five family members of Khan, and former foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi who is also an accused in the case, will be allowed to attend the proceedings along with the public and media. The trial of the state secret case, also called the cipher case, was being held in jail but the Islamabad High Court last week declared it illegal.

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