Gill remanded to police custody for 48 hours

ISLAMABAD (Agencies): An Islamabad district and sessions court on Wednesday approved a two-day physical remand of PTI leader Shahbaz Gill at the request of the capital police. Additional District and Sessions Judge Zeba Chaudhry announced a verdict that was reserved earlier on Wednesday.
“Muhammad Shahbaz Shabbir Gill is given in the custody of the investigating officer for the purpose of investigation for 48 hours,” the court order reads. The judge also directed the investigation officer to get the respondent medically examined and submit a report to the court.
The district and sessions court in Islamabad took up the plea for Gill’s remand as the prosecution and defence lawyer furnished arguments. Prosecutor Raja Rizwan Abbasi told the court that the detained party leader was “repeatedly telling lies” and that a polygraph test had to be conducted.
He said the investigators also needed the suspect’s mobile phone records which could potentially lead to more evidence. “We are yet to investigate the person who allegedly approved the script of the suspect (Gill), which [led him to utter seditious remarks].” The prosecutor also questioned how a judicial magistrate, who refused Gill’s physical remand, accepted the suspect’s statement as “conclusive”.
He also rejected the claim by the PTI, saying that “a justification of suspension of mobile network signals due to Ashura is also incorrect”. Abbasi urged the court to allow the physical remand of Gill to process the investigation. Defending his client, Gill’s lawyer Salman Safdar sought copies of the questions that the PTI leader faced during interrogation.
“The public’s response to determine whether Gill’s remarks were seditious should have been awaited before a case was filed against him,” the lawyer argued. He criticised the prosecution’s argument for what he said was its emphasis on Gill’s remarks being made at someone’s behest. “Some of the things could be wrong but they do not fall under sedition, conspiracy or crime,” Gill’s lawyer contended.
He insisted that a person who had been sent on judicial remand could not be sent back on physical remand again. “Shahbaz Gill said his private parts came under torture,” his lawyer told the court, adding: “I also asked him whether he was being tortured by the police or someone else.” To which, the lawyer said, Gill told him that he was blindfolded when subjected to the alleged beating.
His counsel also quoted Gill as saying the investigators were asking whether “Imran Khan is an alcoholic”. Safdar said his client would cooperate with authorities even if he was granted bail.