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Two non-bailable arrest warrants issued for Imran Khan

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan was served with two non-bailable arrest warrants for failing to appear in court in charges related to the Toshakhana probe and threatening Additional District and Sessions Judge Zeba Chaudhry on Monday.

Senior Civil Judge Rana Mujahid Rahim (hearing the judge-threatening case) and Additional District and Sessions Judge Zafar Iqbal (hearing the Toshakhana case) issued arrest warrants for Imran Khan and ordered the police to present the former premier before the courts on March 18 and March 21, respectively.

In the Toshakhana reference, the court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Zafar Iqbal reinstated Imran Khan’s non-bailable arrest warrants and directed that the PTI head be arrested and presented to the court by March 18. Former Prime Minister Imran Khan has missed three indictment hearings in the case. He is accused of concealing details of gifts he received from the Toshakhana. In the threatening of a female judge, a local court in Islamabad on Monday issued non-bailable arrest warrants for PTI Chairman and former Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Judge Rana Mujahid Rahim of the district and session court rejected Imran Khan’s application seeking exemption from appearance in the court and issued his arrest warrants for failing to attend the hearing of the case registered against him for hurling threats at Additional Sessions Judge Zeba Chaudhry. While pronouncing the reserved verdict, the judge adjourned the hearing until March 29, ordering Margalla Police Station to produce Imran Khan at the next hearing.

During the court proceedings, the lawyer for the PTI chief Intezar Haider Panjutha said it was not safe for the 71-year-old politician to come to Islamabad amid security threats against him, adding they have filed a petition in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) asking permission to appear virtually before the courts. Another member of Khan’s legal team, Naeem Haider Panjutha, said a petition has been filed seeking exemption from attendance on behalf of the former prime minister on security grounds.

The lawyer also requested to accept Imran’s plea, arguing “not appearing for some reasons and not willing to appear are two different things.” Earlier, the sessions court had rejected the PTI chief’s plea by saying “if Imran did not appear in court today, a non-bailable arrest warrant against him would be issued.

The judge said that if Imran Khan does not appear during court hours today, he would issue a non-bailable arrest warrant against him. After that, the court briefly adjourned the hearing till 12:30 pm and later resumed it. The judge also remarked that the court will hear arguments on a petition seeking Imran’s dismissal from the case during the next hearing.