Imran Khan, a former prime minister of Pakistan, has been accused with violating anti-terrorism legislation.
Imran Khan, the former prime minister of Pakistan, was charged with violating anti-terrorism laws after making a fiery speech to supporters over the weekend in which he threatened to sue police officials and a female judge and claimed a close aide had been tortured after his arrest.
Rana Sanaullah, the interior minister, tweeted that Khan would “face the law for making threats and insults.”
On Monday, hundreds of Khan’s fans gathered in front of his hilltop residence in Islamabad, promising to stop his arrest.
The prime minister’s administration, Shehbaz Sharif’s, which seized office after Khan was ousted in an April vote of confidence, is the brother of the imprisoned former prime minister Nawaz Sharif. The protestors yelled anti-government slogans.
When Pakistan’s media watchdog forbade television networks from airing live remarks by Khan following his rally in Islamabad, tensions erupted violently on Saturday. At the rally, he blamed the crackdown on his party and workers on “neutrals,” a term he uses to allude to Pakistan’s powerful military.
Khan said that he “would not spare” Islamabad’s police head and a female judge for the arrest of his assistant, according to a police account of the gathering seen by Reuters. According to the police report, the speech’s goal was to terrorize the legal and police systems and keep them from carrying out their duties.
In accordance with Pakistani law, police submit what is referred to as a first information report to a magistrate court, who then approves the inquiry. The accused is then frequently detained and interrogated by police.
In Pakistan, where Khan’s administration has utilized them against rivals and detractors, anti-terrorism laws are frequently used as the legal foundation for charges against political leaders.
Fawad Chaudhry, a former information minister and a senior leader of Khan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf party (PTI), warned of “political and administrative consequences” if Khan was arrested. Chaudhry denied claims that Khan had left his house to avoid arrest.
Another former minster, Ali Amin Gandapur, tweeted that “if Imran Khan is arrested … we will take over Islamabad with people’s power.” Others shared footage of supporters from the scene.
PTI went to court on Monday to challenge the charges against Khan. Chaudhry told the Guardian from the court that he was waiting for the charges to be quashed.
Following the loss of his legislative majority in April, Khan—a former famous cricketer who later became a devout Islamist politician—was removed from office. In the final week before he left, he broke the law in an effort to block the vote from happening.
Khan claimed after leaving office that the military had taken part in a US plot to remove him from power without offering any proof. This has been refuted by Washington, the Pakistani military, and the Sharif government.
Since then, Khan has been speaking at sizable demonstrations across the nation, railing against the military, the courts, and the media while calling for new elections.
Political analyst and journalist Nusrat Javed claimed that Khan’s statements had given the authorities permission to pursue him.
Khan’s arrest is desired by more than just the civilian government, he claimed. He has reached a point where he can be detained soon as a result of his outburst against the military establishment and the courts.
Javed downplayed worries that turmoil might result after Khan’s imprisonment. We must realize that Khan is the sole representative of his party and that he is a charismatic leader and crowd-pleaser, the man stated. “I don’t believe his party leadership will be able to protest for more than three days after he is imprisoned.
“His party will not harm the state buildings there because they are in control in the provinces of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.”
As the “modern” face of Pakistan who had the support of the military and had made promises of economic growth and the eradication of corruption, Khan was elected prime minister in 2018.
However, the economic crisis, which included record inflation, marred his term in office. Additionally, he had a reputation for caving to radical Islamic organizations, and during his administration, blasphemy-related public executions and acts of religious violence increased.