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Pakistan Supreme Court Grants Bail To Imran Khan In Cipher Case

Pakistan's Supreme Court grants bail to former Prime Minister Imran Khan in the state secrets leak case, but he remains incarcerated due to a separate corruption conviction.

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Former Pakistan PM Imran Khan
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Pakistan's Supreme Court granted bail to former Prime Minister Imran Khan and his close aide Shah Mahmood Qureshi in the cipher case, which involved the alleged mishandling of a diplomatic document containing state secrets. The court, led by Justice Sardar Tariq Masood, directed the leaders of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) to submit surety bonds of Rs 1 million each, as reported by PTI.

The case revolved around accusations that Khan and Qureshi violated the country's secret laws by mishandling a diplomatic document sent by the Pakistan embassy in March of the previous year. The Federal Investigation Agency's charge sheet claimed that Khan failed to return the document. The PTI argued that the document contained a U.S. threat to remove Khan as the prime minister.

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Despite the bail, Imran Khan will remain in jail due to his conviction in the Toshakhana corruption case. The cipher trial, initiated by the Special Court (Official Secrets Act) at the Adiala district jail, resumed last week after the indictment of Khan and Qureshi on December 13.

This development follows the Islamabad High Court's previous annulment of the jail trial proceedings, deeming the government's notification "erroneous." The court had endorsed Khan's indictment while instructing the special court judge to ensure a "fair trial." Imran Khan was ousted through a vote of no-confidence in April 2022, and he faces over 150 cases since his removal from power.

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