‘It’s true’, Shahbaz Gill endorses Imran’s claims of sexual assault in custody hours after denial

RAWALPINDI/ISLAMABAD - A judicial magistrate of Islamabad on Monday granted the police a two-day physical remand of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shahbaz Gill while rejecting the request of his lawyers for judicial remand in the sedition case. The court also granted permission to Gill for meeting his family and legal team.

Shahbaz Gill was produced before the court of Judicial Magistrate Malik Amaan by the police amid foolproof security arrangements. The court was informed that the case file was with the Islamabad High Court (IHC) as an identical was also being heard there. The defence lawyers said the IHC had ordered that Gill should be allowed to meet his legal team.

The judge said he would pass an order after viewing the verdict. He observed that it was good that Gill’s health had improved. After a recession in hearing, Gill’s lawyer Faisal Chaudhry appeared and said the IHC had reserved its verdict. He claimed that the police were requesting physical remand of his client so that he could be tortured. The judge remarked that he would take a decision after seeing the file now.

Babar Awan Advocate said that the high court had not kept any record of the investigation, as only a writ petition was with it. Faisal Chaudhry Advocate told the court about the history of the case. He claimed that “the script was taken from three places to register the case”. Almost 15 days lapsed after the registration of the case, but an interim challan was not submitted, he added.

Special Public Prosecutor Rizwan Abbasi read out the order of Additional Sessions Judge Farrukh Ali Khan. The two-day physical remand of the accused could not be terminated he stayed in hospital, he said.

Abbasi said he did not support any sort of physical torture on the accused. The physical remand would start only when the court would issue an order in that regard. The prosecution had yet to conclude investigation and for that it required physical remand of the accused, he argued.

Shahbaz Gill, who was brought before the court again, alleged that for the last five days he was not allowed to change the dress and take a bath. He claimed that he had been on hunger strike for the last four days, but was being fed forcibly. He was better but not very well, he added.

After arguments of the lawyers were completed, the court reserved the decision, which announced later. It rejected Shahbaz’s request for judicial remand and granted the police his two-day physical remand.

The court directed the police to submit a report after completing the investigation. It also ordered the police investigating officer to provide full medical facilities to Shahbaz GiIl.

In a surprising move, Shahbaz Gill, in his written statement tendered before court, said he was not sexually abused during detention. However, he claimed that he subjected to torture by the investigators during the course of investigation; an allegation completely denied by the capital city police chief Dr Akbar Nasir Khan and members of inquiry committee.

| Court grants police two-day custody of Gill

SP rank officer should ensure Gill is
not tortured in
custody: IHC

Shahbaz Gill has to meet yet another surprise in court premises when his legal counsels questioned him as to why he had come in court to attend proceedings without wearing a mask and wheelchair. “I was told and even shown a screenshot of a TV channel by SP Nowsherwan that I have been granted bail in a sedition case. Something made me happy and I rushed to court without acting upon the script,” replied relevantly shocked Gill. When the court assumed the hearing of mutiny case, Dr Shahbaz Gill told the judge that despite he was on hunger strike, the doctors in PIMS had force fed him with juice and other food. He also alleged a group of 10 to 12 persons also laid him down and shaved him. “The SP belied me about my bail in the sedition case,” the accused commented before the judge. The lawyers of Shahbaz Gill also presented the medical report of doctors of Adiala Jail before the judge in which the doctors declared Gill was tortured.

During the hearing, Gill also said that police had not given him clothes during the past five days and had also not bathed during this period. He claimed that clothes had been sent from his home but they had been taken away by the investigators.

“I am ready to cooperate with the investigators of Islamabad police if they don’t torture me. I should be sent to jail. I am ready to cooperate in the investigation there,” he pleaded. He said police had treated him very badly even during stay in the ward of PIMS. “Only a judge can sense what cops do with an accused,” he said, adding that he would die if the court handed him over to police investigators on physical remand.

“I will not appear before you after that then. I am an asthmatic,” Gill said in a choked voice.

Meanwhile, an inquiry committee of Islamabad police submitted a report in court which stated that police had not placed Gill under any kind of torture starting from his arrest till the time he was sent to Adiala jail on judicial remand. It may be noted that PTI Chief Imran Khan, a female MNA from Peshawar and some youtubers accused Islamabad police of abusing Gill sexually, physically and mentally. Nonethless, Islamabad police denied any torture on Gill.

The reports mentioned while citing Adiala Jail authorities and the medical board of PIMS that no sign of torture was found on body of Gill. Meanwhile, Islamabad High Court (IHC) Monday directed the federal government to appoint a retired judge of a high court as inquiry officer to probe the allegations of police torture on Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shahbaz Gill.

A single bench of IHC comprising Acting Chief Justice of IHC Justice Aamer Farooq conducted hearing of the petition wherein the Inspector General of Police, ICT submitted a report about the allegations of torture on PTI leader Shahbaz Gill when he was in police custody. The IHC bench also directed that a police officer of SP rank should supervise the physical custody of Gill and he should ensure that Gill is not being physically tortured in police custody.

After issuing the aforementioned directions, the IHC bench disposed of PTI leader Shahbaz Gill’s petition against the Sessions court’s decision of granting his two days physical remand in the sedition case.

Shahbaz Gill while talking to reporters late Monday night admitted that he was sexually assaulted in custody.  “It is true,” the PTI leader replied when asked about Imran Khan’s claims that he was sexually abused during his detention.

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