ISLAMABAD – An Anti-Terrorism Tribunal (ATC) in Islamabad on Wednesday accepted a request to waive the constitutional immunity of President Dr. Arif Alvi granted to him as head of state under Article 248 of the Constitution in a pending case.
Previously, the president appeared in court on March 4, unprecedented in the country’s history, and pleaded not to avail himself of his constitutional immunity. The president and his lawyer, Dr. Babar Awan, had also asked the court to decide the case on the merits.
Dr. Alvi had submitted two separate applications; one for waiver of his right under Article 248 of the Constitution and the other related to Article 265-K CrPC.
The ATC Judge, after reviewing the pleas, noted in his order that the President, Dr. Arif Alvi, voluntarily appeared in court without issuance of any proceedings and chose to waive the protection afforded to him. granted under clause (2) of Article 248 of the Constitution.
“No criminal prosecution may be instituted or prosecuted against the incumbent president during his tenure,” the judge observed, citing the constitutional provision. The court further stated that the case was registered before Dr. Arif Alvi entered the post of president, while the proceedings were also suspended against the appellant by the predecessor judge on 20-07-2018.
The judge, in his order, mentioned the reasons for accepting the plea and said that the petitioner having come before him to voluntarily renounce the constitutional protection and that the prosecutor had not opposed the request, ” Therefore, the request for waiver of the protection provided by Article 248 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan 1973 is hereby granted and the proceedings against the applicant are resumed.”
During the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) sit-in in 2014, Islamabad police invoked the anti-terrorism law against PTI leaders, including Dr Arif Alvi, for allegedly inciting party workers to attack the PTV building and the Parliament. in the previous Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government.