Imran Khan gets relief from LHC after day-long drama

Imran Khan/Instagram
Imran Khan/Instagram

LAHORE – The Lahore High Court (IHC) on Monday provided much-needed relief to the former prime minister by granting him protective bail as he arrived with sea of people to avoid his arrest.

Justice Ali Baqar Najafi led two-member bench of the LHC granted him bail in a case registered at the Sangjani police station.

Khan arrived at Lahore High Court with a huge crowd of party leaders and activists who followed the defiant politician. Imran’s close aides including Fawad Chaudhry, Asad Umar, Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Azam Swati, Hassan Niazi accompanied him, with a sea of PTI supporters surrounding the vehicles in a show of support.

Khan decided to appear before LHC as the court extended the already stretched deadlines and gave him another opportunity to secure bail after he failed to show up several times.

Earlier in the day, Justice Tariq Saleem Sheikh of LHC presided over the hearing of the PTI chief’s bail plea in case pertaining to a protest outside the electoral watchdog’s office.

PTI chief was at first set to appear before the court last week but he decided against it citing his health and another assassination attempt. The court then postponed the hearing till today (Monday).

Earlier in the day, PTI chief’s counsel urged the court to allow his client’s vehicle to be allowed inside the court premises. The request was first turned down. However, the court later allowed him. Reports said the PTI chief will apparently be using a wheelchair to reach the courtroom.

The hearing is crucial for an outspoken politician as he is facing arrest in several cases. Khan risks being detained in the case registered against him and others over a protest outside the ECP’s office after his disqualification.

Earlier in February, an anti-terrorism court in capital trashed his bail in wake of his failure to appear for a hearing. As the bail was canceled, PTI chief moved Lahore High Court for protective bail.

This is a developing story and will be updated later…