Khawaja Asif, the Federal Minister for Defence, has confirmed on Sunday that no new military courts will be set up. Instead, the trials for the people involved in causing disturbance on May 9th will be held in the existing courts. The military had earlier pledged to try the protesters and their accomplices involved in the attack under relevant laws, including the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act. The legal process of trial has started under Pakistan Army Act and Official Secret Act as per established legal procedures derived from the Constitution, as stated by COAS General Asim Munir on Saturday.
Asif, while addressing a rally conducted by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) in Sialkot to express solidarity with the armed forces, also said the rights of the accused won’t be taken away, nor will the law be used for political purposes. “The evildoers who were spotted in the videos of attacks on military properties will be tried,” he added.
‘Attack on GHQ included in Indian goals’
Asif also said the attack on the General Headquarters (GHQ) in May was included in India’s anti-Pakistan objectives. “Pakistan’s existence was attacked on May 9. A person [Imran Khan] made this attack just for the sake of his power,” he said.
He visited the Yadgar-e-Shuhada (martyrs monument) in Chawinda to lay a floral wreath on the graves of the martyrs before offering fatiha. Asif paid tribute to the martyrs who sacrificed their lives in defending the country. He urged everyone to show love for the army in its actual sense and discard the impression of what happened on May 9.
On May 9, protests erupted across Pakistan over the arrest of Imran Khan who appeared before the Islamabad High Court for several cases pending since he was ousted last year. The workers desecrated the martyrs’ monument and set Radio Pakistan’s building on fire. The military had vowed to try protesters and their abettors under relevant laws, including the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act. Punjab government constituted a joint investigation team (JIT) to investigate the attacks on civil and military properties.