Bushra Bibi, the wife of Imran Khan and founder of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), took legal action on Tuesday by filing a petition with the Islamabad High Court (IHC) concerning the notification that designated her Banigala residence as a sub-jail. In her plea, she requested to be transferred to Adiala Jail to serve her sentence, aligning herself with the status of an ordinary convict.
In the petition submitted today, the former first lady expressed her desire to fulfill her sentence in Adiala Jail, just like any other individual convicted of a crime. The petition named several respondents including Islamabad’s chief commissioner, Adiala Jail superintendent, the inspector general of Punjab prisons, and the state.
Bushra Bibi narrated the events of January 31st when she was en route to Adiala Jail to surrender following the verdict in the Toshakhana reference. However, upon her arrival, she was made to wait for an extensive period from 10 am to 9 pm. Later, she was informed that her residence in Banigala had been designated as a sub-jail, without her consent or request.
Security risks and fairness of law cited as basic reasons
The petition emphasized Bushra Bibi’s willingness to abide by the law and serve her sentence in the designated prison, expressing concerns about her safety in the makeshift sub-jail due to potential security risks and the presence of unidentified individuals in the vicinity.
Furthermore, the plea argued against the fairness and equality of the situation, citing Islamic principles of justice whereby every citizen should be treated equally under the law. It also highlighted logistical challenges, especially with an upcoming hearing in the Al-Qadir Trust case scheduled for February 10th.
Bushra Bibi and Imran Khan were sentenced to 14 years in jail by an accountability court in the Toshakhana case, which involved the illegal sale of state gifts. Their Banigala residence was designated a “sub-jail” by authorities at the request of the Adiala Jail superintendent. The court also imposed hefty fines and disqualified Imran Khan from holding public office for a decade.