Iddat Case: Islamabad Court Upholds Imran Khan, Wife Bushra Bibi’s Sentences

A district and sessions court in Islamabad on Thursday has rejected the pleas of former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and his wife, Bushra Bibi, to suspend their 7-year sentences in the Iddat Case.

The verdict, which had been reserved on Tuesday, was announced by Additional District and Sessions Judge Afzal Majoka. The Iddat conviction has been harshly condemned by lawyers, women activists, and members of civil society as a “blow to women’s right to dignity & privacy.”

Protests erupted in Islamabad, with activists criticizing the ruling, while demonstrators in Karachi voiced their opposition to the “state’s intrusion into people’s private lives.”

Case Insights

The case dates back to February 3, when an Islamabad court sentenced the couple to 7 years in prison and fined them each PKR 500,000 for getting married during Bushra Bibi’s Iddat period.

The couple was already dealing with other legal issues, having been sentenced to 14 years in prison in the Toshakhana case, and Imran Khan, along with his foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, received 10-year sentences in the Cypher case the same week.

However, earlier this month, Imran and Qureshi were found not guilty in the Cypher case, and the penalties in the Toshakhana case were suspended in April.

The Iddat case was initially heard by District and Sessions Judge Shahrukh Arjumand, who reserved the verdict in May. On the day of the anticipated announcement, he requested the case be transferred, citing Maneka’s plea to be removed from the appeals panel. The case was then moved to ADSJ Majoka.

Despite this, Bushra Bibi’s attorney petitioned the Islamabad High Court for her release on bond and a suspension of her sentence.

In a related development, the session’s court was instructed by the Islamabad High Court to rule on the pleas of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) founder and his wife within 10 days.

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About the Author: Meera Verma