Former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan was transferred to Adiala Jail on Tuesday, despite his request to a special court that he did not want to be shifted from the Attock District Jail.
A sizeable contingent of the Islamabad police reached the Attock jail in the afternoon to execute the Islamabad High Court (IHC) order to transfer Imran to the Adiala Jail.
Insiders informed The Express Tribune that Imran was dressed in black trousers and a T-shirt when he left the Attock jail premises.
Sources said that Imran underwent medical examination upon reaching the Adiala Jail.
They added that the PTI chief replied in negative when asked about having any disease.
Later, he was shifted to the block, which had been reserved for the former prime ministers.
As per the Jail Manual, the PTI chairman would be provided the facilities of TV, newspaper, and servant in the jail, according to the sources.
He would also get a mattress, chair, and table in his cell, they added.
Imran was lodged in the Attock District Jail on Aug 5 following his same-day conviction in the Toshakhana case. The Punjab authorities cited “security concerns” for lodging him in the Attock jail, located approximately 90 kilometres west of the federal capital.
On Aug 29, the IHC suspended the PTI chairman’s sentence in the Toshakhana case but the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) arrested him on the same day in connection with alleged illegal possession and use of a diplomatic cipher.
Since then, a special court established under the Officials Secrets Act, was hearing the case inside the Attock jail. One such hearing was also held on Tuesday, in which Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain extended Imran’s judicial remand till Oct 10.
During the hearing, the FIA team was present as well as Imran’s lawyers Salman Safdar and Umair Niazi. The former prime minister’s lawyers Naeem Haider Panjotha and Latif Khosa also reached the jail to attend the hearing.
According to the sources, Imran gave a statement before Judge Zulqarnain, saying that he did not want to be transferred to the Adiala Jail. He added that he had now adjusted to the Attock jail and would ask his lawyers to withdraw the transfer application.
The court extended the judicial remand of the PTI chairman till Oct 10, ordering his presence on the next hearing.
It also ordered the FIA to submit the challan or charge-sheet to the court as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who was also arrested in the same case, was presented in the same court at the Federal Judicial Complex, where his attendance was marked. Later, his judicial remand was also extended till Oct 10 and the hearing was adjourned.
Two weeks ago, the special court had rejected the post-arrest bail applications of Imran and Qureshi, noting that “sufficient incriminating evidence is available” against them.
Subsequently, Imran filed a petition in the IHC for a post-arrest bail in the cipher case.
Imran’s bail application would be heard by Chief Justice Aamer Farooq on October 2, according to the IHC cause list. Meanwhile, the IHC chief justice on Tuesday rejected a request from the prosecution for an in-camera hearing of the bail application.
In a two-page written order, the court said that the FIA prosecutor had stated that there were sensitive information and documents related to the case, which had been filed under the Official Secrets Act.
It added that the petitioner’s lawyer had given arguments in open court.
Also, the IHC issued a written order for the transfer of Imran to the Adiala Jail. The court said that the petitioner should be provided all the facilities in the jail which he was entitled to.
However, the court rejected the request for provision of gym equipment to Imran in the jail.
Chief Justice Aamer Farooq said in the order that the court could not issue such instructions because it was not clear whether such facilities were allowed or not. He added that the jail superintendent was the competent authority in this regard, therefore, an appropriate application should be filed with them.
A day earlier, Chief Justice Farooq allowed the PTI chief’s petition for his transfer to Adiala Jail.
The court ordered that Imran’s request for his transfer to Adiala Jail was approved, as it invalidated the notification of transfer of the PTI chief to Attock jail.
The court order said that the trial court had asked to keep Imran at Adiala Jail but the petitioner was transferred to the Attock jail to complete his sentence due to overcrowding at Adiala Jail and security concerns, on the recommendation of the inspector general of prisons.
When the IHC suspended the sentence on Aug 28, Imran was arrested in the cipher case. The current status of the petitioner was that of an under-trial prisoner, it said, adding that under-trial prisoners of all cases in Islamabad were kept at Adiala Jail, while convicted prisoners could be shifted to any jail.