ISLAMABAD: Former Pakistan prime minister and PTI chief Imran Khan will appear before the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday seeking a pre-arrest bail amid unprecedented security a day after the countrys Supreme Court ordered his immediate release, calling his detention illegal.
Meanwhile, Imran Khans Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has called a rally today and urged its followers to gather outside the court where the former PM is also likely to address them. The PTI has announced that party chief Imran Khan will address his supporters at the Srinagar Highway in the federal capital on Friday after appearing before the Islamabad High Court. In a statement on Twitter, the party urged its supporters from across the country to gather at the spot at 10 am to “express solidarity” with Imran.
Imran Khan was arrested on Tuesday in the Al-Qadir Trust case by authorities following the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) order to probe him in alleged corruption when he was present on the premises of the IHC.
Imran Khans Arrest Illegal: Pak SC
The apex court on Tuesday announced that the former prime minister’s arrest was “illegal” and directed authorities to release him “immediately”. Soon after that, the supporters and party workers hailed the court’s decision.
The Supreme Court, in an order issued on Imran Khan’s petition against his arrest, has allowed the former prime minister to meet up to 10 guests for as long as he wants while he is at the Islamabad Police Lines Guest House, reported Dawn.
PTI Workers Celebrate SC Order
The supporters of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) were ecstatic over the release of their leader, Imran Khan and celebrated the top court’s decision, reported Geo News. They poured into the streets soon after the Pakistan Supreme Court’s verdict to release party chairman Imran Khan in the Al-Qadir Trust case. “All Pakistanis, wherever they are, should come out to express solidarity and gratitude to the Supreme Court in their respective areas,” tweeted PTI leader Usman Dar, ex-special assistant to the prime minister on youth affairs. He called on the party supporters to take to the streets to express solidarity and gratitude to the top court, reported Geo News.
PTI leader Imran Ismail was also overjoyed at the SC’s verdict. “Imran Khan released by Supreme Court. Pakistan zindabad,” he wrote on the popular microblogging site. Pakistani actress Mishi Khan thanked the top court and Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial for giving a “fair and right verdict”.
Imran Khan’s ex-wife, Jemima Goldsmith, also celebrated the SC’s decision, reported Geo News.
Taking to Twitter, Goldsmith wrote: “Finally sense has prevailed.”
PML-N Leaders Fume Over Imran Khan’s Release
After the Supreme Court ordered the immediate release of Imran Khan, the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders took exception to the “double standards of justice,” reported Dawn.
Reacting to the verdict, PML-N Chief Organiser Maryam Nawaz criticised Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, asking him to step down from the post and join the opposition party, reported Geo News.
PML-N leader Marriyum Aurangzeb while addressing a press conference in Islamabad said that “a few hundred armed protesters and terrorists have been attacking” the country and state properties regarding the protest by PTI supporters. “You all saw how PTI leaders incited violence and gave orders for attacks on Imran Khan’s directives,” she alleged.
Moreover, she cited the Islamabad High Court order, stressing that Imran’s arrest was carried out in a legal manner, reported Dawn. “But the impression of the Supreme Court giving relief to a criminal, terrorist, and a gangster leading armed groups — it amounts to backing a terrorist,” she decried.
She further said several PML-N leaders faced arrests and raids in the past but no one raised any question. “Because all of that was done in support of the Ladla (a favourite child)” who disrespected the SC.
Protests In Pakistan
Imran was arrested in the Al-Qadir Trust case, in which he has been accused of corruption, from the Islamabad High Court premises on Tuesday afternoon before he was due to attend the hearings of two other cases.
The former prime minister’s arrest sparked violent protests across the country, during which at least eight people were killed, several injured and thousands rounded up amid police action. There were many incidents of arson.