Pakistan court delays charging Ex-PM Imran Khan with contempt

Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Imran Khan, who is facing a contempt of court case, appears at a court, in Islamabad, Pakistan, on September 22, 2022. (REUTERS/Waseem Khan)

A Pakistan court delayed until October 3 framing contempt charges against former Prime Minister Imran Khan after he offered to apologize for his angry comments against a female judge during a public rally last month.

Khan is willing to apologize to the judge, according to the court order.

On Thursday, a five-judge panel of the Islamabad High Court, headed by Chief Justice Athar Minallah, asked him to submit the apology in writing saying that he regretted his comments, his lawyer Hamid Khan told reporters.

This is one of many legal challenges the former cricket star faces that could derail his political career. He faces a possible jail term of up to six months if convicted in the contempt case. Any criminal conviction will also bar him from contesting elections for five years.

Since his removal from power in a no-confidence vote in April, he has campaigned for early elections in the country. He has held massive rallies targeting state institutions, including the country’s powerful army and judiciary.

On Wednesday, Khan said he would launch a fresh push for snap polls starting Saturday — calling it the “True Freedom movement. He gave no other details. In the past, the former leader urged his supporters to march to the capital Islamabad.

“Khan will build pressure by using public support because its the only security he has, said Hasan Askari Rizvi, professor emeritus at the political science department of Lahore’s Punjab University. “His survival at the moment rests on this.




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