Denied permission to talk to his sons, Imran Khan pushes for legal action

Pakistan’s jailed former prime minister Imran Khan on Monday filed a petition in a special court seeking contempt of court proceedings against the Attock jail superintendent for allegedly denying him permission to speak to his sons over the phone, according to a media report.
Khan, 70, is in judicial custody till September 13 in the cipher case for allegedly disclosing state secrets. He has been incarcerated in the Attock prison since his arrest on August 5 after a trial convicted him in the Toshakhana corruption case.
Last month, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief was granted permission by the special court, formed to hear cases registered under the Official Secrets Act, to speak to his sons – Qasim and Sulaiman. However, Khan in the petition sought contempt of court proceedings against the Attock jail superintendent for violating the court’s order, Geo News reported.
In the petition, Khan claimed that jail officials denied him permission to have telephonic conversations with his sons on the pretext that he was held under the Secrets Act.
Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain issued notice to Superintendent Attock Jail Arif Shehzad and sought a report on the implementation of the court’s order on September 15. The purported cipher (secret diplomatic cable) contained an account of a meeting between US State Department officials, including Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu, and Pakistani envoy Asad Majeed Khan last year.
Of late, Khan has come under increased scrutiny following the publication of a purported copy of the secret cable by the US media outlet The Intercept, with many in the previous government led by Shehbaz Sharif pointing fingers at the PTI chief for being the source of the leak.
A division bench comprising Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Aamir Farooq and Justice Tariq Mehmood Jahangiri on Wednesday suspended Khan’s three-year sentence in Toshakhana corruption and ordered his release from the jail in Punjab province. But he remained in jail after a special court last month extended till September 13 the judicial remand of Imran Khan in the cipher case. Earlier, Khan, through his lawyers had filed a petition before Judge Zulqarnain seeking permission to talk to his sons Qasim and Sulaiman — living in London with their mother — on the telephone. The judge had directed the Attock Jail officials to make arrangements for the father to speak to the sons over the phone.

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