Thursday, June 08, 2023
LAHORE: Punjab Home Department has granted consular access to Pakistani-origin US citizen Khadija Shah, who was allegedly involved in an arson attack on Jinnah House on May 9, The News reported Thursday.
Sources said that Punjab Home Department made the decision after instructions from the Ministry of Interior.
The sources said the US officials are set to meet her today (Thursday) at 11pm at Kot Lakhpat Jail in the presence of prison as well as Special Branch officials.
After receiving the US officials’ request for consular access to Shah, the Ministry of Interior issued a no-objection certificate (NOC) and directed the additional chief secretary of the Punjab Home Department to give consular access to Shah.
The Ministry of Interior has also informed the Punjab IG Prisons and the superintendent of Kot Lakhpat Jail about its directions in this regard. During a weekly press briefing, US State Department spokesperson Vedant Patel had said that Washington was pursuing Shah’s case and it asked the Pakistani government to grant consular access to Shah.
“She holds dual citizenship and the US always stands alert to help the US citizen wherever he or she is arrested,” said the spokesperson of the US State Department.
"And we expect Pakistani authorities to respect all free, all fair trial guarantees owed to these detainees," he added.
The military installation was attacked on May 9 when supporters of PTI stormed and set it ablaze in the wake of the party chairman's arrest in the £190m settlement case. Shah said that she is a prominent supporter of PTI.