Indictment deferred as Gill unwell

Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: A district and sessions court of Islamabad on Friday deferred Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shahbaz Gill’s indictment in a sedition case against him for inciting mutiny within the army.
Additional Sessions Judge Tahir Abbas Supra heard the case. Prosecutor Rizwan Abbasi and Gill’s lawyer Burhan attended the court hearing while Gill appeared before the court in an ambulance on oxygen support.
The PTI leader arrived in the court as the court had issued a bailable arrest warrant for the PTI leader, saying that Gill should ensure his appearance in yesterday’s hearing.
Gill’s lawyer argued that they could not take him out of the ambulance as he had an oxygen mask on. The court remarked that it looked like the suspects were trying to buy time.
Gill’s attorney said that the court had issued arrest warrants for a sick man. The court marked Gill’s attendance while he remained in the ambulance.
On the other hand, Ammad Yusuf, another suspect in the case, applied for an exemption from attendance through his lawyer. He said that his client contracted malaria and should be excused from the hearing.
The judge remarked that Gill came from Lahore in an ambulance, but Yusuf was not able to come from Karachi. At this, the lawyer submitted his medical report to the court.
However, the court rejected the application and issued a bailable arrest warrant against Yusuf, and adjourned the indictment proceedings against Gill and Ammad till January 20. The court also issued instructions to ensure the suspect’s attendance at the next hearing.
Gill was taken into custody on August 9 for inciting mutiny within the Pakistan Army through his remarks during a private TV channel show.
He was booked in a sedition and arms recovery case in August and stayed in detention for over a month. He, however, finally got bail from the Islamabad High Court (IHC) in the sedition case on September 15, after repeatedly attempting to get released.
The case against Gill is registered at Kohsar Police Station, under Sections 124-A (sedition), 505 (statements conducing to public mischief), and of the Pakistan Penal Code.
The PTI had been insistent in demanding the party leader’s bail, alleging that he is facing humiliation, torture and sexual abuse in police custody.
While Gill was in police custody, the PTI had repeatedly alleged that he was “sexually assaulted”, “tortured”, and “stripped-naked”. However, the authorities completely denied the claims.