An Islamabad court has called for the physical presence of Imran Khan, the former prime minister of Pakistan, in a case related to his marriage with Bushra Bibi, which has been deemed 'un-Islamic.' This summons comes despite concerns raised by officials at Attock Jail, where Khan is currently incarcerated, regarding security risks associated with his appearance in court.
The 70-year-old leader of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party was summoned on Monday by the Islamabad court to address allegations surrounding his marriage to Bushra Bibi. The ceremony, solemnized by Pakistani cleric Mufti Saeed in 2018, has been criticized for not conforming to Islamic Sharia law. Mufti Saeed previously asserted that the wedding took place during Bushra Bibi's iddat period, a three-month waiting period observed by Muslim women after the dissolution of a marriage.
Bushra Bibi is Khan's third spouse and comes from a prominent landowning family in Punjab. Her first marriage, spanning approximately three decades, was to Khawar Farid Maneka, a member of an influential political family in Punjab.
The Attock Jail superintendent, citing security concerns, penned a letter to Civil Judge Qudratullah, who is overseeing the 'un-Islamic' marriage case. In the letter, it was mentioned that Khan is a high-profile under-trial prisoner facing charges in the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Counter Terrorism Wing's cipher case, related to the alleged disclosure of state secrets under the Official Secrets Act. The superintendent requested an exemption from Khan's appearance in the 'un-Islamic' marriage case, highlighting that a trial for the cipher case was concurrently taking place within the jail premises before Special Court Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain.
Contrary to the jail authorities' request, police sources affirmed that Khan was expected to appear before Judge Qudratullah, with a list of deployed policemen for his security at the court provided to jail authorities.
Additionally, Attock Jail officials would receive information about the Islamabad police vehicles, including their number plates, tasked with transporting Khan to court. These security measures have been communicated to the interior ministry for consideration.
Meanwhile, on the same day, a top Pakistani court ordered Khan's transfer from Attock Jail in Punjab province to the high-security Adiala prison in Rawalpindi. This decision follows earlier directions by the Islamabad trial court, which had sentenced Khan to three years in jail, to lodge him at Adiala prison. However, Khan was initially placed in Attock jail after his arrest.
In August, Khan's party had petitioned the Islamabad High Court (IHC) to relocate him to Adiala prison, where A-class facilities are available, taking into account his family background, social status, and political stature. Khan has been in custody since August 5, following his conviction in the Toshakhana corruption case, although his sentence was suspended by the IHC on August 29. Nonetheless, he remains incarcerated due to the ongoing cipher case, which revolves around a missing diplomatic document reportedly in Khan's possession, claimed by the PTI leader to contain a threat from the United States to remove him from power.