CJ IHC Athar Minallah suspends flight ban on Shehbaz Gill, Shahzad Akbar, others
ISLAMABAD ( Web News )
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leaders got a temporary relief from the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday after it suspended the Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) notification of a flight ban against them.
Former PM aides Dr. Shahbaz Gill, Barrister Mirza Shahzad Akbar had approached the IHC earlier in the day, requesting the high court to dismiss the ban. Later, the IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah also suspended the ban against former principal secretary Muhammad Azam Khan, Imran’s ex-focal person on digital media Dr. Arslan Khalid, and Mohammad Nafees Gohar.
The CJ IHC maintained that according to the petitioner, after the no-confidence vote against former prime minister Imran Khan, their names were placed on the Provisional National Identification List (PNIL), arguing that only those involved in heinous crimes could be put on the list.
The CJ IHC issued a notification to the interior secretary and the director general of the FIA, and further ordered them to reveal the authority under which the petitioners’ names had been placed on the ‘stop list’.
The court, while referring to Gill and Akbar, asked whether the duo had plans to go abroad by today (Wednesday). “We are seeking a reply from the FIA tomorrow,” Justice Minallah said.
The IHC then sought a reply from the interior secretary and the FIA chief and adjourned the hearing till today (Wednesday).
The PTI leaders had filed petitions in the IHC against their names being added to the FIA’s ‘stop list’.
The petition maintained that there was no case or charges against the leaders; therefore, the ban on them traveling abroad was against the law. They further requested the court to lift the ban against them.
Former PM aide on accountability, Shahzad Akbar, asked the court to summon the FIA and inquire them about who gave their names for the ‘stop list’ as there was no cabinet and no government as of recent.
“There must be a case or a requesting agency for being put on the stop list. The director general of the FIA must reveal the person who placed this order,” Shahzad said.
Talking to the media, Shahbaz Gill claimed that his name and the names of his colleagues were added to the Exit Control List (ECL) while members of the National Assembly were being “bought and sold at the behest of the US”.
He maintained that adding people’s names to the ‘stop list’ without charges of corruption against them was contempt towards honest people.