Pakistan's former prime minister Imran Khan would be indicted on Thursday in a contempt case against him for making controversial remarks against a female judge during a rally here last month, according to a circular issued by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday.
During a rally here on August 20, 69-year-old Khan had threatened to file cases against top police officials, election commission and political opponents over the treatment meted out to his aide Shahbaz Gill, who was arrested on charges of sedition.
He had also taken exception to Additional District and Sessions Judge Zeba Chaudhry, who had approved Gill’s two-day physical remand at the request of the police, and said she should "prepare herself as action would be taken against her."
Hours after the speech, Khan was booked under the Anti-Terrorism Act for threatening police, judiciary and other state institutions at his rally.
Justice Aamer Farooq decided to initiate contempt proceedings against Khan while hearing a petition challenging Gill’s police remand.
On Wednesday, the circular issued by the IHC stated that the proceedings of the case will start at 2:30pm, during which a larger bench will frame the charges against Khan.
"A 15-member legal team of Imran Khan, 15 law officers from the office of the attorney-general and advocate-general will be allowed to enter the courtroom,” read the circular.
No one except for the above mentioned will be allowed entry to the courtroom, unless they have the special passes issued by the IHC Registrar office, it added. "[The] Islamabad administration and police will make security arrangements to maintain decorum in court,” it added.
Earlier, terming Khan's response "unsatisfactory" at the last hearing on September 8, the IHC had decided to indict him after he did not submit an unconditional apology. The court had given Khan twice an opportunity to give a written response to satisfy the court but he failed to satisfy the court which announced to indict him.
Khan was ousted from power in April after losing a no-confidence vote in his leadership, which he alleged was part of a US-led conspiracy targeting him because of his independent foreign policy decisions on Russia, China and Afghanistan.
The cricketer-turned-politician, who came to power in 2018, is the only Pakistani Prime Minister to be ousted in a no-confidence vote in Parliament.