LHC throws out petition challenging PTI leader Fawad Chaudhary's arrest

Fawad Chaudhary's arrest is not illegal and police followed the legal process says Lahore High Court

The Lahore High Court has dismissed the petition filed against the arrest of PTI leader and former federal minister Fawad Chaudhary. The Islamabad police arrested Fawad Ch today morning from his Lahore residence.  Justice Tariq Saleem Sheikh of LHC heard the argument and declared the arrest of Fawad Ch legal. He told Fawad's counsel that his client's arrest was not "illegal" since the police had followed due procedures required for detaining the former minister. LHC has said that Fawad can approach Islamabad High Court against his arrest.  

The LHC had earlier ordered that the authorities present Fawad before it in response to a petition filed by Fawad's cousin, Nabeel Shehzad, for the "recovery" of the former federal minister.

The petitioner had filed a habeas corpus plea and urged the court to "recover" the PTI leader after the Islamabad police acquired his transitory remand. He also appealed to the court to stop any illegal action against the PTI leader.

Interestingly, the orders were issued after a local court of Lahore had approved Fawad's transitory remand in a sedition case filed against him in Islamabad on the election commission's complaint.

The IG Punjab Dr Usman Anwar appeared before the court and told the court that as the mobile signals were "weak", he could not contact the police party that was transporting the PTI leader.

"I was made aware that Islamabad Police have Fawad Chaudhry in custody. Also, we have not violated any orders of the court as I wanted and tried to contact the Islamabad Police."

Anwar added that although he wasn't sure whether Fawad was in Islamabad Police's custody or not, he noted that the ex-federal minister was not in Punjab Police's custody.

For his part, Advocate General (AG) Punjab Jawad Yaqoob said the case has been registered against Fawad at Islamabad's Kohsar Police Station. "The Islamabad Police came here to arrest him."

The AG said the police presented Fawad at a court in the morning to get his transitional remand. "Fawad's lawyers opposed the remand. Then, the prosecutor read out the remand plea. It should be noted that Islamabad Police represented itself everywhere," he said, ruling out the role of Punjab Police.

The Punjab government's counsel, while pleading his client's case, said that the administration had no "ill intention" and added that his arrest was made in line with the law.

In his response, Fawad's counsel said that it was unfortunate that despite the court's orders, the "abducted" person has still not been produced before the court.

But the court maintained that the plea was maintainable earlier, but now it isn't. Justice Sheikh then dismissed the plea.


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