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Imran Khan, Qureshi indicted in cypher case

Former prime minister Imran Khan and ex-foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi pleaded ‘not guilty’ on Monday as the two Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leaders were indicted in the cypher case.

The indictment came as the court rejected Imran’s plea seeking deferment in the process.

During the hearing, prosecutor Shah Khawar termed the plea a “delaying tactic” and requested the court to reject it, stating that today’s hearing was fixed only for indictment.

Presiding over the hearing, Judge Abul Hasnaat Zulqarnain of the special court – formed to hear cases under the Official Secrets Act – summoned government officials listed as witnesses in the case for October 27.

“This is a false, fabricated case, designed to exact political revenge. Will prove my innocence,” the PTI chief was reported to have said as he denied the charges.

Addressing the media outside the Adiala jail, – where the former premier’s in-camera jail trial is being held – his lawyer Usman Riaz Gul said that although today was fixed for indictment “[we] requested for the process to be deferred till full statements of the witnesses as well as the seizure memo were provided to the accused”.

“Both PTI chairman and Shah Mahmood Qureshi had written while signing that they will not be able to respond to the indictment charges until provided with all the documents of the case,” he added.

However, the court rejected the arguments of the former premier’s legal team and proceeded with the indictment process.Another lawyer from Imran’s legal team, Umair Niazi, told the media that the former premier had denied the charges, adding that the indictment will be challenged in the high court.

 

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