ISLAMABAD - The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Monday reserved its verdict on petition of FIA seeking in-camera hearing on bail petition of chairman PTI in cipher case. Chief Justice Aamer Farooq heard the post-arrest bail plea of Chairman PTI and Federal Investigation Agency (FIA)’s case for in-camera hearing together. During the course of proceeding, Special Prosecutor FIA Shahkhawar Advocate adopted stance that trial of an accused under Official Secrets Act could not be conducted openly. He said that the hearing on bail petition could also be done in-camera as the prosecution had to present some sensitive material before court.
The prosecutor said that open hearing in this case could affect diplomatic relations with some countries. The chief justice asked the lawyer to tell the code of conduct in cases under Official Secrets Act. Additional Attorney General Munawar Dread pointed out the code of conduct and said that every country had separate codes for messaging. Shahkhawar Advocate said that cipher was a secret document, which was kept secret.
The ciphers used to be sent through fax or e-mails in coded form and they were de-coded by the foreign office to understand.
The foreign office was the actual home of ciphers, he said.
PTI Chairman’s Lawyer Barrister Salman opposed the request of FIA and argued that if the cipher was already made public as per the FIR then now what document the prosecution wanted to be not made public. Why this application was not filed in trial court, he asked.
After hearing arguments, the bench reserved verdict on the application of FIA and adjourned this day’s hearing.