ISLAMABAD   -   Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shahbaz Gill Friday approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC) seeking his post-arrest bail in a sedition case registered against him.

The court has fixed the hearing of Gill’s petition and a single bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice of IHC Justice Athar Minallah will take up this matter on September 5.

In the petition, the PTI leader adopted the stance that evidence of torture was found on him and thus, the court may grant him post-arrest bail in this matter.

Earlier, a local court in the federal capital turned down his bail plea this week and observed that despite being a responsible person, Gill made a sensational statement that was enough to disturb the harmony and discipline of the Pakistan Army.

In an eight-page verdict, an Additional Sessions Judge said that Gill was a leader of a popular national-level party PTI and he had not made the said statement in an indoor meeting. The court order said that the accused had prima facie committed a crime under Section 131, which was a non-bailable offense and that there was solid evidence on record against him.

After rejection of bail plea, the PTI leader moved the IHC and cited SHO Kohsar, City Magistrate and others as respondents in the petition. He stated that on August 17, a medical board consisting of senior doctors of the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) conducted an examination and according to both, the medical board of Adiala Jail and PIMS, evidence of torture was found on the petitioner and therefore the court may grant post-arrest bail.

The petitioner requested the court that the bail may be granted to the PTI leader till final decision of the case.

Gill maintained that the case registered against him was politically motivated with ulterior motives and malafide intentions. Gill argued that for charges under mutiny and sedition, approval and sanction of the federal government is a pre-requisite and claimed that neither the same was granted in this case. He contended that without permission and sanction, the very registration of a first information report, followed by arrest, detention and remand under Section 167 CrPC, is a nullity in the eyes of the law. The petitioner also argued that the FIR against Gill was registered after the passage of one day, which it claimed was used to cook up a story by manipulating and twisting the words of his statement.

He further said that the PTI leader was a senior party member and ever since the incumbent government came to power, it had been trying to lodge a case against him and put him behind bars.

Gill continued that these repeated attempts made to incarcerate him clearly and obviously point towards political victimization of the petitioner. He added that it is, therefore, a politically motivated case in which offences have recklessly been applied.

He maintained that the allegations against him were vague, misconstrued, and based on incorrect facts and prayed to the court that his speech on ARY News had to be seen in totality to get the real meaning and context intended to be conveyed.

He also mentioned the alleged torture against him and contended that the PTI leader was subjected to physical abuse, torture and violence during the custody. The PTI leader further said that he was suffering from genuine and serious medical complications and required sophisticated treatment and medical care which, unfortunately, is not available in prison.

He mentioned that moreover, the jail authorities observed bruises and marks of violence on different parts of his body. He added that the PTI leader hailed from a noble family and was also a respectable citizen but he was incarcerated despite the completion of the probe.

Therefore, he prayed that the petitioner may graciously be granted post-arrest bail till the final disposal of the case.