'Holding a political gathering is not terrorism', Khan argues before ATC
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- PTI chief files acquittal, appearance exemption requests
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Thursday appeared before an anti-terrorism court (ATC) hearing four cases pertaining to violence, including the destruction of property in the Red Zone, attack on the state TV channelâs building and injuring then-SSP Operations Asmatullah Junejo during the 2014 protest.
During the hearing, Khan argued that holding a political gathering was not terrorism. âWhat type of democracy is this that for holding a political gathering, I have been charged with terrorism?â he asked before judge Shahrukh Arjumand.
The judge, however, told the PTI chief to address the court through his lawyer.
Moreover, the PTI chief filed two requests in court, one pleading his acquittal and t he other an exemption from appearance in court. The court ordered copies of both requests to be provided to the prosecution.
Imranâs counsel also requested a decision to be made on the acquittal before he is indicted in the case.
The court adjourned the case until February 26, when the remaining cases of the sit-in violence will also be heard. Moreover, the judge observed that Imran will have to appear in court until his exemption is approved.
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Earlier, when Imran arrived to appear in court, he disembarked from his vehicle outside the Federal Judicial Complex and proceeded towards the court on foot.
When a reporter asked him why he did not take his vehicle inside the complex up to its main entrance as former prime minister Nawaz Sharif does during his corruption hearings, Imran said he is an âordinary citizen and not royaltyâ.
âNawaz Sharif acts like he did nothing wrong after stealing mi llions of dollars from this country, he keeps making contemptuous remarks and keeps asking mujhe kyun nikala even though he knows what he has done,â Khan claimed.
âI am convinced that our current prime minister is nothing except a puppet made to sit there so that corruption can prevail,â the PTI chief alleged.
Speaking about the Lodhran election which was won by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawazâs candidate, Khan said that the fact that the young Ali Tareen managed to procure so many votes is a major accomplishment for someone contesting the election for the first time.
âWe chose Tareen because there are only three months left before the next election,â Khan said while justifying choosing a party memberâs son as the contestant for the Lodhran election in response to a question.
On September 1, 2014, violence broke out in the federal capital when PTI and Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) supporters attempted t o break a police cordon and storm the PM House, using cranes to remove barricades.
The decision to march to the PM House was taken after talks between the government, PTI and PAT had failed to end the deadlock over the resignation of the then-prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
The two parties were protesting âriggingâ in the 2013 general elections.
The clashes between police and protesters resulted in the deaths of three people and injuries to over 560.
Of the injured, 77 were security officials deployed in the Red Zone, including SSP Junejo, had to spend several days in the ICU due to the serious nature of his injuries.
It was Junejoâs first day on the post, after assuming command from Ali Nekokara. Junejo, known as an upright officer, was recently posted back to the capital as the assistant inspector general (operations).Post Views: 44Source: Google News