Pakistan: FIA order to add Imran’s aides on no-fly list suspended

Islamabad, April 12 : The Islamabad High Court on Tuesday suspended the Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) order placing the names of former prime minister Imran Khan’S key aides, including his former adviser on interior and accountability Shahzad Akbar and special assistant on political comm cation Shahbaz Gill and four others – on the “stop list”, Dawn reported. The FIA had on Monday placed six key members of the former PTI government — Gill; Akbar; Imran Khan’s focal person on digital media, Dr Arsalan Khalid; PM’s former principal secretary Azam Khan; Punjab Anti Corruption Director-General Gohar Nafees; and Mohammad Rizwan — on the “stop list”. Any person who is placed on the “stop list” is not allowed to leave the country. Akbar filed a petition with the IHC on Tuesday, seeking revocation of the FIA move that bars him and others from travelling abroad, wherein he had made the Ministry of Interior, FIA director general, and FIA Immigration additional director general as respondents. Akbar urged the court to summon the FIA chief and inquire from him on whose directions his name was placed on the “no-fly list”. In his petition he pointed out that he was placed on the no-fly list “at about 1.55am”, just after voting on the no-confidence motion in the National Assembly had taken place, which he said “showed malafide intention on part of the respondents, who acted at the behest of someone behind the scene without having an inquiry of complaint by any party.” He urged the court to declare the FIA’s act void and unconstitutional and order an inquiry into it. IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah remarked that the court had already declared the “black list” illegal. The court, while referring to Gill and Akbar, asked whether the duo had plans to go abroad by tomorrow. “We are seeking a reply from the FIA tomorrow,” Justice Minallah said. The IHC then sought a reply from the interior secretary and the FIA chief and adjourned the hearing till Wednesday. ACL1546

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