Pakistan's Former PM Imran Khan told to Surrender in Murder case by Supreme court

Pakistan's Former PM Imran Khan told to Surrender in Murder case by Supreme court

Legal troubles for former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan seem to further escalate as the country's Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief to 'surrender' before it in person over the murder case of senior lawyer Abdul Raazaq Shar in Quetta last month.

Shar was a senior Supreme Court lawyer who was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Quetta on June 6. It is worth mentioning that Shar had filed a constitutional petition against Imran Khan and sought him to be placed under trial for illegally dissolving the National Assembly following the no-confidence motion initiated by the opposition last year, Dawn reported.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif's aide Attaullah Tarar had alleged that the lawyer was killed at Khan's behest to evade accountability in the high treason case, while PTI spokesperson Raoof Hassan had instead targeted Sharif for the murder.

A three-judge bench of the Pakistan Supreme Court had told Khan's counsel, Sardar Abdul Latif Khosa, that Khan must surrender before the court before seeking any interim relief. The case against Khan was lodged by the deceased lawyer's stepson.

In his petition, the cricketer-turned-politician had sought to appeal Balochistan High Court's decision to quash the FIR against him in the lawyer's murder case. Khan's counsel had filed an application appealing the Supreme Court to hear the matter urgently since he "apprehends coercive action on part of the authorities."

Khosa also argued that his client had rejected the constitution of a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) to probe the lawyer's murder.

Meanwhile, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah on Thursday warned that the former Pakistan PM might be arrested if he fails to cooperate with the investigation into the leaking of national secrets. The issue has been dubbed as the 'cipher case'

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in a notice to Khan asked the PTI chief to appear before the bureau here on July 25 in connection with the cipher probe. "If he does not cooperate during the inquiry stage, he could face possible arrest. Following the investigation, the FIA will make recommendations based on evidence regarding those who are complicit and against whom criminal cases should be filed,' Sanaullah said.

Notably, Sanaullah's warning came a day after a close aide of Khan accused his ex-boss of using a diplomatic cable from Pakistan's mission in the US to build an 'anti-establishment narrative'.