22 November 2022

By Rehan Piracha

LAHORE: A trial court in Islamabad on Tuesday adjourned proceedings for the indictment of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Shahbaz Gill in a sedition case till December 3.

On November 21, the Islamabad High Court refused to acquit Gill in the sedition case and asked him to approach the trial court. In the case, Gill was accused of inciting rebellion against state institutions over his controversial remarks aired on a private television channel.

Gill appeared before the court along with co-accused Imad Yusuf in the case. His lawyer Burhan Moazzam filed applications for the postponement of the hearing, citing that the defence had not been informed about seven or eight other accused in the case.

Public prosecutor Raja Rizwan Abbasi told Additional Sessions Judge Tahir Abbas that there were only two accused in the case. However, Gill’s lawyer sought a complete list of the accused in the case. The public prosecutor told the court he was ready to argue on applications submitted by Gill’s lawyer who in turn requested to postpone the case.  

During the proceedings, the judge quipped about whether the date of the hearing be postponed till November 26, referring to the proposed date of PTI’s long march reaching Islamabad.

But Gill said he would face difficulty reaching the court as roads would be blocked on that day.

The judge postponed the indictment of Shahbaz Gill in the sedition case till December 3. The court would hear arguments from the prosecution and defence lawyers on the applications submitted by Gill and Yousuf at the next hearing. 

Gill was arrested on August 9 after the case was registered against him at the Kohsar police station under Pakistan Penal Code (PPC)’s sections 124-A (sedition), 131 (abetting mut­iny or attempting to seduce a soldier, sailor or airman from his du­­ty), 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot if rioting be committed; if not com­­mited), 153-A (promoting enmity) between different groups, etc), and 505 (statements conducing to public mischief) and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation).

According to the FIR, a programme was aired on a news channel in which Gill appeared as a guest. Answering a question, he tried to create a divide between the officers below the rank of brigadier and above besides trying to affiliate the officers below the rank of brigadier with a political party, it added.



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