IHC directs sessions court to rehear plea for Gill's physical remand in sedition case

August 16, 2022

Justice Aamer Farooq tells sessions judge to decide case on merit

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PTI leader Shahbaz Gill arriving in police custody for a hearing at an Islamabad district and sessions court on Friday in the federal capital.— Online/File

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday directed a district and sessions court judge to rehear the petition to review the dismissal of Shahbaz Gill's physical remand in a sedition case filed against him.

The directive came during the announcement of the verdict reserved on the admissibility of the federal government's petition against the rejection of an extension in the physical remand of the senior PTI leader, sought under a separate plea.

Islamabad Advocate-General Jahangir Jadoon, on August 13, had moved the IHC seeking its order to declare the decision taken by the district and sessions court null and void while extending the physical remand of Shahbaz Gill, a close aide of PTI Chairperson Imran Khan.

After hearing arguments from both sides during today's hearing, IHC Chief Justice Justice Farooq ruled that the government’s plea against the orders of the judicial magistrate is admissible and directed the sessions court to hear the police’s request today.

The IHC CJ ordered the sessions judge to decide the case on merit.

"It is not the jurisdiction of the high court to see for how long an accused has to be remanded. No matter how serious the offence is, only the magistrate is to look into the matter of remand," Justice Farooq said.

Meanwhile, the court took up Shahbaz Gill’s plea — seeking dismissal of the FIR against him — for hearing together with the government's plea.

Accusing the police of lodging a sedition case against him on the directives of the federal government, Gill pleaded with the IHC to declare the FIR against him null and void. He maintained that the case registered against him is based on malice, adding that the Islamabad Police registered the case to show its loyalty to the government.

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