"Double Standards Of Justice": Nawaz Sharif's Party On Imran Khan's Release
After Pakistan Supreme Court's order to release of ex-PM Imran Khan, the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders took exception to the "double standards of justice," reported Dawn.
After the Supreme Court of Pakistan ordered for the immediate release of Imran Khan on Thursday while terming the arrest of the former Prime Minister "unlawful," the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders took exception to the "double standards of justice," reported Dawn.
PML-N leader Marriyum Aurangzeb while addressing a press conference in Islamabad said that "a few hundred armed protesters and terrorists have been attacking" the country and state properties regarding the protest by PTI supporters.
"You all saw how PTI leaders incited violence and gave orders for attacks on Imran Khan's directives," she alleged.
Moreover, she cited the Islamabad High Court order, stressing that Imran's arrest was carried out in a legal manner, reported Dawn.
"But the impression of the Supreme Court giving relief to a criminal, terrorist, and a gangster leading armed groups -- it amounts to backing a terrorist," she decried.
She further said several PML-N leaders faced arrests and raids in the past but no one raised any question. "Because all of that was done in support of the Ladla (a favourite child)" who disrespected the SC.
Directly addressing the chief justice of Pakistan, she said, "Had this love affair ended back then, then chief justice sahib, the court would not have been disrespected the way it is being today."
"Courts are disrespected when they become shelters for criminals, terrorists and armed groups. Courts, the Constitution and justice are disrespected then. Courts are disrespected when their decisions support criminals," she added.
She contended that if the court would back "terrorists" and "armed groups" that "set my country on fire, then all others deserve this relief as well".
Reacting to the development, PML-N leader Khawaja Asif addressed a press conference in Islamabad, highlighting the "double standards of justice," reported Dawn.
He began by recalling that PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif and several other party leaders and workers were arrested in the past.
"But why were they not treated in this kind manner by the court? Is this good treatment reserved only for Imran Khan on a selective basis?" he asked. "They never thought of [...] keeping us in a rest house. Why are there double standards in this country?"
In this connection, the defence minister also referred to a video of Imran released prior to his arrest.
"In his video message published prior to his arrest [...] did Imran not incite and preach violence? And what was the result of that violence?"
Imran was arrested in the Al-Qadir Trust case, in which he has been accused of corruption, from the Islamabad High Court premises on Tuesday afternoon before he was due to attend the hearings of two other cases.
The former prime minister's arrest sparked violent protests across the country, during which at least eight people were killed, several injured and thousands rounded up amid police action. There were many incidents of arson.
Meanwhile, the IHC deemed his arrest within legal parameters, but the Supreme Court ruled today that Imran's arrest was "unlawful" and directed authorities to retain him at the Police Lines Guest House in Islamabad but under the court's supervision as a "guest" until his appearance before the IHC tomorrow.
A three-member bench -- headed by CJP Bandial and comprising Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar -- issued the verdict on PTI's petition challenging Khan's arrest.
Reacting to the verdict, PML-N Chief Organiser Maryam Nawaz criticised Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, asking him to step down from the post and join the opposition party -- PTI, reported Geo News.
"The chief justice was very happy today to meet the criminal who plundered Rs60 billion from the national exchequer and he [CJP] was even more happy to release this criminal," the PML-N leader said while referring to the CJP remarks during the hearing.
At least nine people died and dozens of others were injured during the two-day countrywide protests with rioters damaging public properties and storming the military installations.
"..[the CJP] is acting as a shield of a fitna [rabble-rouser Imran Khan] and is pouring fuel on the fire in the country. You should leave the post of chief justice and join the Tehreek-e-Insaf like your mother-in-law," she added.