Cabinet approves Khan, Qureshi’s jail trial in Cipher case

—— Approves Law Ministry’s summary on jail trial
—— Summary mentions Khan’s security concerns
—— IHC to hear PTI Chief’s appeal against jail trial today

Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: The caretaker federal cabinet on Monday approved the jail trial of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan and Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi in the cipher case.
The cabinet gave its assent to the summary by the Ministry of Law regarding the former prime minister and foreign minister’s trial in the Adiala jail due to security concerns.
In its summary, the ministry wrote that it had issued a no-objection certificate (NOC) for the jail trial on August 29 which was requested by the Interior Ministry and Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain.
“The jail trial was requested for the PTI chairman keeping in view the security concerns,” said the summary.
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) will hear the intra-court appeal filed by Khan against the jail trial on November 14 (tomorrow). The court has sought arguments from the attorney general.
The deposed prime minister — who was ousted from office following a no-confidence motion in April last year — had moved IHC against the jail trial which was rejected by the court’s single bench on October 16.
The single bench, led by IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq, announced no apparent malice behind conducting Khan’s jail trial in the cipher case, the court’s verdict read and directed him to approach the trial court if reservations persist. Later, Khan filed an intra-court appeal against the single bench’s decision.
In August of this year, Khan and Qureshi were booked under the Official Secrets Act 1923 in the cipher case after the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) invoked Section 5 of the said law.
The diplomatic cable reportedly went missing from Imran’s possession. According to the former ruling party, the cable contained a threat from the United States to topple the PTI’s government.
Imran and Qureshi have been indicted by the special court and are currently incarcerated in Adiala jail in the cipher case.
Meanwhile, An accountability court in Islamabad issued on Monday arrest warrants for ousted prem-ier Imran Khan in two cases pertaining to the Toshakhana gifts repository and £190m settlement with UK’s National Crime Agency. The National Accountability Court (NAB) had submitted a request for compliance with the arrest war-rants.