LHC questions sending PTI leaders to far-off prisons, keeping them in death cells

BAWALPUR: The Lahore High Court (LHC) Bahawalpur bench on Tuesday ordered shifting of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leaders – Senator Azam Swati and Muhammad Khan Madni from death cells and sought record of their arrests and detention in far-off jails.

The court also constituted a division bench for the hearing of their petition.

A single member bench of the LHC Balawalpur bench, comprising Justice Anwarul Haq Panno heard the joint petitions filed by PTI lawyers including: Saqib Tariq Chaudhry, Sheikh Mazhar Akbar, Sikandar Hayat and Raza Hussain Lodhi. Both the leaders were produced in the court in handcuffed.

During the hearing, Saqib Tariq, counsel for Azam Swati, argued before the court that both PTI leaders had been lodged in death cells while as per the law only under-trial prisoners could be shifted to far-off jails. At this the court asked the additional advocate general whether the detained leaders were charged under 302 of Pakistan Penal Code and why they were handcuffed and under which rules they were shifted to far-off jails.

The judge also questioned the AAG whether these leaders were facing trial. The law office said an application on behalf of PTI’s Ijaz Chaudhry have already been submitted to the court. On court’s question, assistant superintendent jail said the political leaders were lodged in the death cell. At this, the court expressing its displeasure ordered to take them out of death cells and lodge them in accordance with their category.

On the occasion, Azam Swati submitted that he was a senior lawyer but he was being denied his basic rights. The court formed a division bench to hear the case and adjourned hearing.  Azam Swati and Muhammad Khan Madni also complained of ill-treatment and inadequate facilities in the jail.



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