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IHC orders FIA to remove Shahbaz Gill, Shahzad Akbar from no-fly list

IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah says government should not take actions based on revenge

Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Athar Minallah chastised the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials on Wednesday for failing to abide by the court’s order of temporarily removing the two key aides of former prime minister Imran Khan — Shahbaz Gill and Mirza Shahzad Akbar — from the ‘stop list’, directing that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leaders be taken off the no-fly list immediately.

“The government should demonstrate that it will not take actions based on revenge,” Justice Minallah said, adding that the court would not allow such an act. Justice Minallah further ordered the FIA director general not to “harass” anyone.

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He made these remarks as he heard petitions filed by Gill and Akbar.

During the hearing today, FIA officials informed the court that PTI members were placed on the “stop list” amid the “emerging circumstances in the country”. They added that they took action on a complaint received on April 8 that was forwarded by the FIA Islamabad Zone. They added that Akbar’s and Gill’s names had been added “for having assets beyond means”.

Justice Minallah rebuked the FIA for these statements and questioned since when had the FIA become so independent to register cases against people from the incumbent government.

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The judge stated that the FIA officials should bear in mind that the court would not allow this to happen.

Regarding the delay in removing the names of PTI members from the list, the officials said they received the court order late and had already left to offer prayers. They assured the court that its order would be followed.

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