Islamabad police arrest Parvez Elahi from Lahore despite LHC order


LAHORE – A team of the Islamabad police on Friday arrested PTI President and former chief minister Chaudhry Parvez Elahi under 3 MPO from Lahore. 

The arrest comes shortly after the Lahore High Court (LHC) ordered the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to release Elahi.

The former CM was arrested from the Canal Road Lahore as he was returning to home from the high court after his releases from the custody of the high court. Reports said that Elahi would be shifted to the federal capital via helicopter. 

Earlier in the day, Justice Amjad Rafiq presided over the hearing, which pertained to a petition filed by Elahi challenging his arrest by NAB on alleged corruption charges. The judge, upon delivering the verdict, prohibited authorities from arresting the former chief minister of Punjab in any other cases.

Parvez Elahi is one of several PTI leaders and supporters who have been detained as part of the government’s crackdown on PTI leadership following the May 9 riots that erupted during protests when PTI chief Imran Khan was taken away by paramilitary personnel at the Islamabad High Court premises.

Elahi was initially arrested on June 1 and subsequently detained multiple times on various corruption charges.

His most recent arrest by NAB on August 14 was related to allegations of receiving bribes or kickbacks in exchange for awarding contracts for road schemes in the Gujrat Highways Division to favored or handpicked contractors.

After his release, Parvez Elahi spoke to reporters, holding the PML-N (Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz) responsible for the current state of the economy, stating that they had fled to London after causing economic damage.

During the hearing, Justice Rafiq inquired about Elahi’s absence from the court proceedings. The NAB prosecutor responded by explaining that the accountability watchdog was prepared to bring Elahi to court but had received a letter from the Punjab government outlining threats to Elahi’s life.

The prosecutor further mentioned that the NAB had requested security from the government to bring Elahi to court, and the Punjab Deputy Inspector General (DIG) had responded that bulletproof vehicles and police armored vans were being used in an operation against riverine gangs.

Elahi’s lawyer offered to provide a bulletproof vehicle, leading the court to order the anti-graft body to present the PTI president within an hour. The court warned that if this wasn’t done, it would issue arrest warrants for the Punjab DIG.

Elahi was presented in court around 12:15 pm, after which Justice Rafiq ordered his release and prevented authorities from arresting him in any other cases.

This marked a continuation of a series of arrests and rearrests involving Parvez Elahi, starting from his initial arrest on June 1 on charges of kickbacks in development projects. These legal proceedings have involved multiple cases, legal actions, and detainments, including those related to corruption, illegal recruitments, and money laundering allegations. 

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