Court remands Sh Rashid in custody for two-day

ISLAMABAD: A local court Thursday granted the police two-day physical remand of Awami Muslim League (AML) chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed in a case registered against him for leveling “murder plot” allegations against former president Asif Ali Zardari.

The Awami Muslim League (AML) chief and former interior minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, who is a close aide of PTI chief Imran Khan, was arrested from his Rawalpindi residence in the early hours of Thursday.

He was produced in the court of Judicial Magistrate Umar Shabbir where the police requested an eight-day physical remand of Sh Rashid. The Judicial Magistrate, however, rejected the police’s 8-day physical remand and remanded him in custody for two days.

During the course of proceedings, Sh Rashid told court that he has served as the federal minister at least 16 times, asking the court his handcuffs be removed.

After this, the court ordered police to unlock Rashid’s handcuffs.

Sardar Abdul Razik Khan and Intizar Panjhota, th counsels for Sh Rashid, presented their arguments.

The lawyer of the former interior minister Sardar Abdul Razik Khan began his arguments, saying that his client was arrested in a politically motivated case. “The case against Rashid was registered at 8pm last night. The police had arrested Rashid against the high court’s orders,” he told court.

The prosecutor then told the court that Sheikh Rashid tried to create “threats” for the family members of Zardari by levelling allegations against his client.

Sheikh Rashid is booked under three sections — 120B (criminal conspiracy), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups), and 505 (statements conducing to public mischief).

The prosecutor asserted, “Sheikh Rashid is creating danger for Asif Zardari’s family. According to the sections, Sheikh Rashid can be sentenced to seven years in jail and be fined.”

He argued, “Sheikh Rashid gave the statement that Asif Ali Zardari has conspired to kill Imran Khan. In Pakistan, people can be ready to slit throats at the smallest things.

“Imran Khan has been attacked previously as well. There has been an attempt to create incitement between the parties of Imran Khan and Asif Zardari. Asif Zardari and his family’s life is at risk.” The prosecutor then requested a physical remand of the AML chief.

The judge then asked, “Has Asif Zardari told you that he’s in danger?” The prosecutor responded that Ahmed has given the statement himself.

Prosecutor Adnan then closed his arguments by asserting that Sh Rashid’s voice-matching test needs to be conducted by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and a photogrammetric test is needed as well, emphasising that they were “incredibly important” during the trial.

Sh Rashid’s other lawyer, Panjhota, argued that the prosecution was seeking physical remand just for recording a statement. “Physical remand cannot be granted just for recording a statement.”

For his part, the AML chief told the court that a plan was being prepared to either send the PTI chief to jail or to disqualify him prior to elections.

He argued that giving statements to the media was “also my salary in a way”.

“Imran Khan told me he has evidence that Zardari wants to kill him [so] I said that Imran has evidence against Zardari […] You can file a defamation case against me [instead],” he said, adding that he considered Imran’s claims to be true.

The court reserved the verdict after hearing the arguments.

The early-morning arrest

Confirming the arrest, his nephew Sheikh Rashid Shafique told Geo News that the AML chief was arrested from his home in a private housing society in Islamabad.


The first information report (FIR) — a copy of which is available with — was registered at Islamabad’s Aabpara Police Station under sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups, etc) and 505 (statements conducing to public mischief) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

In remarks quoted by BBC Urdu, Ahmed claimed that around 300 to 400 policemen barged into his house, thrashed staffers, and forcibly took him away.

He alleged that some [personnel] used ladders to enter his house. He went on to say that he had been arrested despite getting relief from the Islamabad High Court (IHC).

The AML leader vowed to challenge his arrest in court.

Several hours before, he posted a photograph on Twitter of him smiling at the Aabpara Police Station.



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