Wednesday, February 08, 2023
ISLAMABAD: A court in Islamabad Wednesday handed over Awami Muslim League (AML) chief Sheikh Rashid to Murree police on a one-day transitory remand in a case registered against the former interior minister for threatening police personnel.
The court while approving the transitory remand directed officials to present the former interior minister — an ally of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan — before a Murree court on Thursday (tomorrow) by 2pm.
During today's hearing, Rashid claimed that a false case was made against him. He said that [the government] wants him to change his political allegiance.
"I handed over the passwords of both mobile phones to the police. The Murree police have interrogated me for hours," said Rashid.
The judge inquired the police if they have requested a transitory remand before.
At this, the police said that this is the first time they have made the request.
However, Rashid's counsel Ali Bukhari said that the AML chief is in custody, adding that Murree police's request for a transitory remand was rejected recently by a judicial magistrate.
"It was rejected as procedure was not followed," he said while opposing the plea for the transitory remand.
Bukhari also questioned why the police were seeking a transitory remand when they have already recovered everything from the former federal minister's house.
"They have also taken Sheikh Rashid's licensed weapons," said the counsel. He added that the remand cannot be granted as it has been rejected again.
He added that the Murree police did not file a plea against the rejection of the transitory remand.
"Do you have a copy of the transitory remand's rejection?" questioned the judge.
The Murree police said that a written decision was not announced and only a verbal order was issued.
Meanwhile, the prosecutor told the court Rashid is on a judicial remand and has to be produced before the Murree court which is why they were seeking the transitory remand.
Initially, Rashid, according to the police, was arrested on February 2, in the case of levelling allegations against former president Asif Ali Zardari. But a day after his arrest, Murree police also registered a case against the AML chief.
The FIR was lodged at the complaint of investigation officer Ashiq Ali, from the Aabpara police station, Islamabad. Rashid threatened the police personnel and stated that he would not spare them, according to the FIR.
The FIR was registered under Section 154 of the Criminal Procedure Code of Pakistan, charging Rashid with interfering in official affairs and resisting his arrest. The FIR states that the former minister physically pushed and abused the police officers and threatened them with serious consequences at gunpoint.
Besides the former minister, his two employees have also been implicated in the case.
The FIR was registered under three sections of the Pakistan Penal Code — 120B (criminal conspiracy), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups), and 505 (statements conducing to public mischief), read the FIR.
A case had also been registered against Rashid in Karachi for using "filthy" language against Bilawal, an FIR under four sections of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) — including 500 (Punishment for defamation), 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace) and 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups) — were registered against him.
According to the FIR, the AML chief used "highly offensive and disgusting" words against party chairman Bilawal during a media talk at the Polyclinic Hospital which led to anarchy among thousands of PPP workers.
A similar FIR was registered in Balochistan's Lasbela district for using "filthy" language against Bilawal.
The FIR includes five sections of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC), including 500 (punishment for defamation), 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace), 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups), and 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions).