Islamabad, Nov 21 (PTI) The Islamabad High Court on Tuesday declared illegal the August 29 notification which had directed jail authorities to keep former Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan in “judicial lockup” in the cipher case, according to media reports.
The court issued the directives while hearing an intra-court appeal filed by Khan against a single-member bench’s decision that had approved the ex-premier’s jail trial in the cipher case, according to the Dawn newspaper.
Earlier in the morning, the two-member panel of Islamabad High Court reserved the judgement till evening.
A single-judge bench of the same court had earlier turned down the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman's appeal against his trial in the Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi.
The 71-year-old former premier has been kept in the Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi since September 26 when he was shifted there from the District Jail in Attock.
The Ministry of Law issued a no-objection certificate (NOC) for the jail trial of the former prime minister as requested by the Interior Ministry and special court Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain on August 29, Geo News reported.
In March 2022, Khan and his foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi were alleged to have violated the secret laws of the country while handling a communication (cipher) sent by Pakistan's embassy in Washington. The diplomatic cable reportedly went missing from Khan's possession.
According to the former ruling party, the cable contained a threat from the United States to topple the PTI’s government.
The duo was indicted on October 23 and their formal trial has already begun with the recording of statements by witnesses.
The Islamabad High Court had upheld the indictment when challenged by the cricketer-turned-politician. However, it had stayed the trial until adjudication on the intra-court appeal. PTI NPK AKJ NPK NPK