ISLAMABAD - The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party on Saturday refuted media reports regarding hiring of a foreign law firm to represent ex-prime minister Imran Khan in international courts to raise alleged human rights abuses in Pakistan, hours after the party itself made such an announcement on the social media.
A PTI spokesperson in a statement flatly refuted the social media reports regarding the hiring of a foreign law firm to raise the “worst human violations” in Pakistan in international courts.
“PTI Chairman Imran Khan never supported any such initiative even in the face of the worst state oppression and suppression and open violation of the Constitution and law in the country,” he added.
A day earlier, PTI from its official X (formerly Twitter) handle quoted a tweet of Doughty Street International, a group of leading international lawyers from Doughty Street Chambers, saying that PTI Chairman Imran Khan had appointed eminent human rights Barrister Geoffrey Robertson to advise and represent him in international courts in relations to his unlawful detention and human rights abuses in Pakistan.
Hours after these reports, some journalists criticised the PTI for the decision saying that Robertson was the lawyer of Salman Rushdie and had defended him in the blasphemy case against him. Defence analyst Ayesha Siddiqa rebuked some remarks from journalists and took to the X to say that “lawyers got engaged by all sorts of people.” Many others on social media said that such remarks from senior journalists were tantamount to threatening the life of Imran Khan who has been imprisoned in Attock Jail. Sensing that the issue can take a dangerous turn and political opponents of Imran Khan will use it as a “religious card” against him, the PTI deleted the tweet from its official X handle and issued a rebuttal that it would not get services of the law firm, according to the official party sources. The PTI spokesperson in the statement also strongly “condemned the reign of terror unleashed on” the PTI leaders and its workers in the country. He claimed that PTI neither approached any judicial forum outside Pakistan nor has any intention to do so in future. “There is no truth in the reports.” The spokesperson expressed disappointment over the “failure of the justice system to rein in the rising lawlessness, widespread brutalities and open violation of the law of the land.” He stated that even then PTI demanded justice from the Pakistan judicial system and wanted it to take the much-needed effective measures to ensure supremacy of the Constitution and the rule of law in the country. He said that the gravity of the situation could be judged from the fact that the chairman of the largest political party of the country was facing the worst political vendetta in the history of the country. He stated that besides being the target of a murderous attack and sabotaging the investigation of the assassination attack on him, more than 180 “false, fake and fabricated cases were framed against Khan in just 16 months.” He said that senior party leadership had been sent behind the bars in frivolous cases against them. He went on to say that PTI had been on the receiving end of the state’s violation of the constitution and the law for the past 17 months in general and especially since May 9. The PTI spokesperson claimed that over 10,000 PTI workers, including senior leaders and women, were unlawfully imprisoned in jails, who were completely deprived of their legal and constitutional rights. He said that after the dissolution of the assemblies of Punjab and Pakhtunkhwa, the Supreme Court (SC) completely failed to implement its order pertaining to the May 14 elections in Punjab. He demanded that it was high time the judicial system of Pakistan should start delivering justice and take steps for upholding supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law in the country.