May 9, 2023 Riots: Pak Anti-terrorism Court Reserves Decision On Imran Khan’s Bail Requests

Imran Khan

An anti-terrorism court has reserved its decision on former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s interim bail requests in cases related to the May 9 incidents in 2023, including the Jinnah House and two other cases.

During the hearing, Imran Khan’s lawyer, Barrister Salman Safdar, argued that the PTI founder was being politically targeted.

“In my entire career, I have never seen so many cases against a single individual. Those who were actually inciting against institutions at the scene were not arrested,” Safdar alleged. He also questioned, “How could a case be filed against him when he was in custody at the time of the crime?”

Case Insights

In response, the government’s lawyer stated that a special branch report indicated Imran Khan had instructed his followers to target civil and military installations if he were arrested. The prosecutor argued, “The directive to attack military installations across Pakistan resulted in the events that transpired.” After hearing arguments from both sides, the court reserved its verdict on the PTI founder’s interim bail requests.

On May 9, 2023, violent clashes erupted across Pakistan after former Prime Minister Imran Khan was arrested. Protests occurred in various cities, with Balochistan, Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Islamabad calling in the armed forces to maintain law and order.

Army installations, including the Corps Commander’s house in Lahore, were attacked during the protests by PTI workers. Imran Khan was named as the main accused in all the May 9 riots cases.


On July 3, a district and sessions court in Islamabad acquitted Imran Khan and all other defendants in a case lodged at Islamabad’s Aabpara police station.

Judicial Magistrate Yasir Mahmood announced the reserved verdict, clearing Imran Khan, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Sheikh Rasheed, Shehryar Afridi, Faisal Javed, Raja Khurram Nawaz, Ali Nawaz Awan, Asad Qaiser, and others of all charges.

The decision came after the defence, represented by Advocate Sardar Masroof and Ansar Kiani, presented their arguments on behalf of Imran Khan, Sheikh Rasheed, and others.

Additionally, on July 1, at least 140 PTI workers were acquitted in a case related to holding a rally before the general elections. The court found that the accused were not arrested at the spot and no incriminating material was recovered from them. Furthermore, local residents had not complained about road blockades.

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About the Author: Meera Verma