According to police documents seen by CNN, police opened an investigation after Khan vowed to “take action” against the chief of police and a female magistrate during a speech in Islamabad on Saturday.
“Listen, Director Inspector General (of Police), we are not going to let you go, we are going to file a case against you. And Madam Magistrate, you also need to prepare, we will take action against you,” Khan said. hundreds of his supporters at a rally in support of his former chief of staff, Shahbaz Gill, who was arrested earlier this month on sedition charges after urging soldiers not to follow orders from military leaders.
Khan has alleged that police tortured Gill while he was in custody, allegations that have attracted widespread attention among the former prime minister’s supporters. Islamabad police have denied Khan’s allegations, telling CNN on Saturday that Gill was not tortured.
On Sunday, Islamabad police tweeted a video of Khan’s speech, which read: “Anyone making threats or accusations will be treated according to the law.”
Khan has not been arrested and has not publicly commented on the investigation. His Pakistani party Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) said the investigation was based on “frivolous allegations with no legal basis”.
Khan’s team filed a bail petition with Islamabad’s Supreme Court on Monday, PTI media coordinator Raoof Hassan told CNN.
“If they have to arrest him now, they should have the bail revoked before the arrest. This is now going to be a legal battle,” Hassan said.
Hundreds of Khan’s supporters gathered outside his home on Saturday night following reports of the police investigation and vowed to “take over” the capital if he was detained.
Live broadcast ban
As tensions mount, Pakistan’s Electronic Regulatory Authority (PERA) issued an order late Saturday banning Khan’s speeches from being broadcast live on television, citing “hate speech”.
Khan “defended baseless accusations and spread hate speech through his provocative statements against state institutions,” according to a PERA statement, adding that the comments “would likely disrupt public peace and tranquility”.
Channels can broadcast recorded speeches, according to the order.
In a Twitter post Monday, Khan accused the government of temporarily blocking YouTube during his speech on Saturday. “Not only is this a gross violation of freedom of expression, but it is also negatively impacting the digital media industry and the livelihoods of many,” he said.
CNN has reached out to YouTube and the Pakistani government for comment.