PTI chief to be indicted in cypher case on October 17
Former prime minister Imran Khan will be indicted in the cypher case on October 17, announced the court on Monday as the hearing of the cypher case against him officially began.
The hearing was presided over by special court Judge Abdul Hasnaat Zulqarnain. Prosecutor Zulfiqar Abbas Naqvi, , Imran’s counsel Salman Safdar as well as Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shah Mehmod Qureshi’s daughter and son were also present at the hearing.
During today’s hearing at the Adiala jail, copies of the charge-sheet were distributed among Imran and Qureshi’s – his co-accused – lawyers. The PTI chief’s lawyers also met him briefly in the prison van.
Prosecutor Naqvi informed the court that all the necessary copies had been provided to the court.
Later, the court then issued directives for all government witnesses to be summoned along with the charge-sheet on October 17.
Previously, the Federal Investigation Agency (PTI) had claimed that the former PM was guilty of breaching the Official Secrets Act of 1923 and deserved to be punished as per the law.
The charge-sheet submitted by the FIA to a special court also accused Shah Mahmood Qureshi of facilitating Imran.
Last week, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) rejected the FIA’s petition for holding in-camera proceedings of the bail application of the PTI chairman.
Announcing the reserved verdict on FIA’s petition, IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq ruled that the matter would be heard before an open court but the documents to be kept confidential, would remain so after consulting the counsel. The court fixed the bail application hearing for October 9.
The cypher case
The cypher case concerns a diplomatic cable, which reportedly went missing from Imran’s possession. Imran had repeatedly said before and after the no-confidence motion against him last year that the cipher pointed to a conspiracy to remove him from the prime minister’s office.
Imran was ousted through a vote of no-confidence in April 2022. He was incarcerated on August 5, 2023, after an Islamabad court sentenced him to three years in prison in the Toshakhana case. The PTI chief was lodged in the Attock District Jail to serve his prison term.
Later, his sentence was suspended by the IHC, but then the PTI chief was arrested in the cypher case and remained in the Attock jail on judicial remand. Later, a special court was formed under Official Secrets Act to try Imran inside the jail premises.
PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who was the foreign minister in the Imran-led government, is also implicated in the case. In the last hearing of the case on September 26, their judicial remand was extended till October 10.