Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, the head of the Awami Muslim League (AML) and a supporter of the PTI, was taken into custody by Islamabad police early on Thursday.
Sheikh Rasheed was detained in relation to comments he is accused of making about former president Asif Ali Zardari, in which he allegedly accused him of organizing a “death conspiracy to kill PTI head Imran Khan.”
His nephew Sheikh Rashid Shafique confirmed the incident to the news agency, saying that the AML leader was taken into custody from his residence in a housing society in Islamabad.
Sheikh Rasheed Arrest Complaint
The senior politician was detained as a result of a police complaint made by Raja Inayat-ur-Rehman, the vice chairman of the PPP’s Rawalpindi Division.
In it, he claimed that the AML chief had claimed that PPP co-chairman Asif Zardari had received help from a terrorist to kill Imran Khan in a television interview on January 27.
Imran Khan, the leader of the PTI, claimed in a broadcast address on January 27 that Zardari was behind a new murder plot, or “plan C,” and that a terror organization had been hired for the purpose. He didn’t provide any supporting details for his charge.
A copy of the first information report (FIR), which was filed at Islamabad’s Aabpara Police Station under the Pakistan Penal Code’s sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups, etc.), and 505 (statements conducing to public mischief), is available with the news agency.
Sheikh Rasheed stated that between 300 and 400 police officers stormed into his home, beat up household staff members, and forcibly removed him. BBC Urdu reported Sheikh Rasheed’s comments.
He said that some [personnel] broke into his home using ladders. He continued by saying that, despite receiving relief from the Islamabad High Court, he had been arrested.
The head of AML pledged to take his arrest to court.
He had earlier shared a picture of himself smiling at the Aabpara Police Station on Twitter.
تھانہ آبپارہ میں pic.twitter.com/wEm0CFmXrS
— Sheikh Rashid Ahmed (@ShkhRasheed) February 1, 2023
He claimed that as the police were trying to arrest him, they looted his home and beat his domestic workers in a video message shared by the PTI on its official Twitter account.
Exclusive talk by Sheikh Rasheed after his illegal arrest: pic.twitter.com/vlCU9ON7Zy
— PTI (@PTIofficial) February 1, 2023
He asserted that his attorney Mian Tahir had obtained his release on bail and continued by saying that Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah was responsible for the incident.
“The IG has been summoned on Feb 6 [for this imove],” the AML chief said, adding “justice will prevail and we are with Imran Khan”.
Strongly condemn arrest of Sh Rasheed.Never in our history have we had such a biased, vindictive Caretaker govt appt by totally discredited ECP. Question is can Pak afford a street movement which we are being pushed towards at a time when we have been bankrupted by Imported Govt?
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) February 1, 2023
Sheikh Rasheed’s speech was allegedly made as part of a plot to malign the former president and pose a long-term threat to his family, according to the FIR filed against the AML leader.
“He wants to create conflict and enmity between two groups – PPP and PTI – with this fabricated and baseless conspiracy so that the peace of the country can be disturbed,” it added.
He had been asked by the Islamabad Police to appear before it today in relation to the case yesterday. The notification was, however, put on hold by the Islamabad High Court (IHC).
The Islamabad police chief was also sent notices by the court, and he was requested to suggest a senior officer who could brief the high court on the case’s facts.
The former interior minister asserted that the former president had allegedly hired “assassins to kill Imran Khan” and that he had “inside information of the murder conspiracy”.
Sheikh Rasheed said in the plea that the notice the local police had given him was in conflict with certain parts of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC). A further hearing has been postponed until February 6.
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