Pak court to hear ex-PM Imran Khan's post-arrest bail plea in Cipher case on Monday
Khan, 70, filed a petition in IHC against the rejection of his post-arrest bail by a special court that is proceeding against him and former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi in the case
The Islamabad High Court on Saturday fixed September 25 as the date for hearing jailed former prime minister Imran Khan's post-arrest bail in a case related to the alleged disclosure of state secrets.
Khan, 70, filed a petition in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) against the rejection of his post-arrest bail by a special court that is proceeding against him and former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi in the case.
The special court on September 13 extended the judicial remand of Khan and two-time foreign minister Qureshi till September 26 in the cipher (secret diplomatic cable) leakage case.
Both Khan and Qureshi have been accused of violating the secret laws of the country regarding a document sent by the Pakistan embassy in March last year that has gone missing.
According to a cause list issued by the IHC registrar for the coming week, IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq will hear the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party chief's bail petition on Monday (September 25), The News reported.
Earlier this week, the court issued a notice to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), seeking arguments in the case.
The special court — established under the Official Secrets Act — had rejected the post-arrest bail pleas of Khan and his party's Vice Chairman Qureshi in the case.
Last month, the FIA booked the PTI chief and his party’s vice chairman under the Official Secrets Act for allegedly misplacing and misusing the classified document for vested political interests.
Subsequently, both leaders were arrested in connection with the investigation into the case and a special court was established under the Official Secrets Act to try the accused.
Khan has been kept in the Attock Jail since August 5 after his conviction in the Toshakhana corruption case. His sentence was suspended by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on August 29, but he continues to remain in Attock prison in the cipher case.
In March last year, ahead of the vote of no-confidence that resulted in his ouster, Khan pulled out a piece of paper - allegedly the cipher - from his pocket and waved it at a public rally in Islamabad, claiming it was the evidence of an “international conspiracy” being hatched to topple his government.
However, during the interrogation with the joint investigation team (JIT) in the jail on August 26, Khan denied that the paper he waved at a public gathering last year was the cipher. He also admitted to losing the cipher, saying he couldn't recall where he kept it.
His principal secretary Azam Khan stated before a magistrate and the FIA that the Khan used it for his ‘political gains’ and to avert a vote of no-confidence against him.
The purported cipher contained an account of a meeting between US State Department officials, including Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu, and Pakistani envoy Asad Majeed Khan last year.
Of late, Khan has come under increased scrutiny following the publication of a purported copy of the secret cable by the US media outlet The Intercept, with many in the previous government led by Shehbaz Sharif pointing fingers at the PTI chief for being the source of the leak.
Published: 23 Sep 2023, 5:37 PM