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Interior minister says Imran Khan’s trial can be done in military court

In a significant development, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah announced on Friday that the trial of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan for his alleged involvement in the countrywide violence that
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Interior minister says Imran Khan's trial can be done in military court

In a significant development, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah announced on Friday that the trial of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan for his alleged involvement in the countrywide violence that erupted on May 9 might be conducted in a military court.

Sanaullah highlighted that the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act are applicable to activities within military areas. During a press conference, he emphasized that the Pakistan Army Act extends to individuals who entered restricted areas, facilitated others in doing so, or abetted such actions.

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Drawing attention to the Jinnah House, the minister referred to the shocking attack perpetrated by enraged PTI workers on May 9. This incident occurred following Imran Khan’s arrest in the Al-Qadir Trust case. The protest, which spanned several days, led to widespread vandalism of private and public properties across cities in Pakistan. PTI workers even targeted military installations, including the Jinnah House and the entrance of the General Headquarters (GHQ).

The military has condemned the events of May 9 as a “Black Day” and firmly asserted that anyone involved in vandalizing military installations will face trial under the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act. Chief of Army Staff General Asim Munir has confirmed that the legal process has been set in motion.

Sanaullah clarified that, contrary to the perception created by PTI, only a small number of cases, specifically “six” out of nearly 500, are being processed to be tried under the Army Act. The minister affirmed that the remaining cases would be dealt with by regular courts, seeking to dispel any misconceptions surrounding the government’s crackdown on those allegedly responsible for the May 9 mayhem.

Addressing the legal actions taken against the vandals who attacked government and military installations, Sanaullah disclosed that 499 First Information Reports (FIRs) had been registered in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Among these, 88 FIRs were filed under the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA), while 411 were registered on other charges.

Providing further details, Sanaullah stated that a total of 3,944 suspects had been apprehended in both provinces, with 2,588 arrests made in Punjab and 1,099 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Additionally, 5,536 arrests were made in unrelated cases, but a significant proportion of those individuals have been released on bail.

To clarify misconceptions about the involvement of military courts, the interior minister categorically denied rumors that all cases would be transferred to military jurisdiction. He explained that only seven out of the 499 cases were being processed to be tried in military courts, specifically 19 accused in Punjab and 14 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Sanaullah stressed that such measures were not being taken in any other regions.

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