In a big relief for former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, the country’s Supreme Court on Thursday declared his arrest as illegal and asked him to appear before the High Court on Friday.
The directives to present Khan in the court came after Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial termed the PTI leader’s arrest from the premises of Islamabad High Court (IHC) as a mighty disgrace to the country’s judicial establishment.
The top court ordered the NAB to produce the former Pakistan cricket captain “within an hour” as a three-member bench heard the PTI’s petition challenging Khan’s arrest.
“What dignity remains of the court if 90 people entered its premises? How can any individual be arrested from court premises?” the chief justice was quoted as saying by Dawn newspaper.
“In the past, action has been taken against lawyers for vandalism inside the court,” he observed.
“If an individual has surrendered to the court, then what does arresting them mean?” The top judge said the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had committed “contempt of court”.