Sharif's son-in-law gets bail in bakery assault charges
Lahore: Pakistan's Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif's son-in-law Ali Imran Yousuf was on Friday granted bail by a court, a day after he was arrested for allegedly directing his bodyguards to assault a bakery worker who had refused to serve his wife.
Rana Asad, the counsel for Yousuf, told a sessions and district court that his client had no involvement in the case and should be released.
He claimed Yousuf had been declared innocent in the investigative report submitted by police.
No one appeared in court to represent the complainant.
Yousuf's wife Rabia Imran was caught on CCTV cameras threatening the worker at the bakery on October 7.
Her private guards and police commandos beat the worker and took him away with them.
They released him after thrashing him.
Sharif was forced to direct authorities to take action against his son-in-law after TV news channels beamed the footage from the bakery's CCTVs.
The PPP and PML-Q, which are in the opposition in PML-N ruled Punjab, have described the arrest of Yousuf as a "drama" staged by the Chief Minister to fool the people.
"It was a media stunt by Shahbaz Sharif," PML-Q legislator Samina Khawar Hayat told PTI.
She said it was one of the unique cases in the country's history that an accused surrendered to police but they refused to charge him.
After spending a night with "VIP protocol" at a police station, Yousuf got bail, Hayat said.
"The Chief Minister's men have threatened the victim not to appear in court to plead his case. In such a scenario, the Chief Minister cannot fool the people," she said.
Another court had yesterday remanded Yousuf to judicial custody for a fortnight.
The Chief Minister held a meeting with his media managers yesterday to identify those who had leaked the incident to the media, sources said.
The seven Elite Police Force commandos and a private bodyguard who were involved in the incident have also been freed on bail.