The Islamabad High Court’s division bench, consisting of Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb and Justice Saman Rafat Imtiaz, has announced the reserved verdict on an intra-court appeal filed by PTI chief Imran Khan. This appeal was against a decision by a single-member bench that had approved the ex-premier’s jail trial in the cipher case.
In a brief verdict, the court declared Imran Khan’s intra-court appeal admissible. It also upheld the appointment of Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain, who is conducting Imran Khan’s trial under the Official Secrets Act in the cipher case.
The court stated that the notification issued by the law ministry on November 15 for Imran’s jail trial was no longer applicable. A short order has been issued by the IHC, and the detailed verdict will be released later.
Imran Khan, currently detained in Adiala jail in Rawalpindi on judicial remand, was indicted in the case on October 23. During today’s hearing, Khan’s lawyer argued that the trial before the cabinet had notified the jail trial was illegal and pleaded with the court to accept the plea against the jail trial in the cipher case.
The Attorney General of Pakistan (AGP) admitted that Khan’s family had not been allowed into the courtroom in the initial hearings due to space constraints. The trial of the case was initiated on October 23.
The short verdict is expected to be announced in the evening. The cipher case involves the former prime minister and the former foreign minister, including allegations of distortion of diplomatic cipher and misuse of its contents for nefarious purposes that endangered state interests.