A local court in Islamabad on Thursday sent Awami Muslim League (AML) chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed to two-day physical remand in a case registered against him for levelling allegations against former Pakistan president Asif Ali Zardari, Geo News reported.
The former minister, a close aide of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, was arrested from Murree Motorway, according to the police. His arrest drew strong criticism from Khan.
Notably, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Rawalpindi Division President Raja Inayat Ur Rehman had filed a case against Rashid in Islamabad's Aabpara Police Station for causing a "permanent danger" to former president Asif Ali Zardari by alleging that PPP Chairman was hatching a plot to assassinate the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan.
In the FIR, Rehman stated that the AML chief tried to badmouth the former president and cause a "permanent danger" to the PPP co-chairman and his family, reported Geo News
According to Geo News, Judicial Magistrate Umar Shabbir rejected the police's plea to send Rashid on an eight-day physical remand and asked the authorities to produce the former interior minister at the next hearing.
Rashid at the beginning of the hearing asked that his handcuffs be removed. He told the court that he's been appointed as the federal minister at least 16 times.
The police thereafter unlocked Rashid's handcuffs.
Abdul Razzaq, the lawyer of the former interior minister, began his arguments and said that Rashid has been targeted in a politically motivated case. "The case against Rashid was registered at 8 pm last night. The police had arrested Rashid against the high court's orders.
The police, instead of arresting Rashid, should have called Asif Zardari to the station," Razzaq said as quoted by Geo News.
The lawyer said that the FIR against Rashid mentions that the ex-minister wanted to create a conflict between the two groups. The names of the PPP and PTI leaders have, however, not been mentioned.
"Political parties criticise each other every day. If such cases will be registered, then no politician will be able to speak," he said, as quoted by Geo News.
Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, former interior minister of Pakistan and a close ally of Imran Khan was arrested in the early hours of Thursday, reported Geo News.
The police confirmed that Awami Muslim League (AML) chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed was arrested from Murree Motorway.
However, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed contradicted the police's version. He said that the authorities took him into custody along with his nephew, Sheikh Rashid Shafiq, from his house in Rawalpindi, not the motorway, reported Geo News.
He said he feared for his life. "My crime is that I'm standing with Imran Khan," he said at the Polyclinic hospital in Islamabad, where he was taken for a medical checkup, reported Geo News.