Karachi: ST leader, activists remanded till 11th
Karachi: The administrative judge of anti-terrorism courts in Karachi on Saturday remanded three Sunni Tehreek activists, including its central leader, to police custody till October 11 under the anti-terrorism law.
ST leader Shahid Ghauri, Mubeen Qadri and Nadeem Qadri were produced before the judge for obtaining their remand in connection with the violence during the strike called by the Sunni Ittehad Council against the conviction of Mumtaz Qadri, who killed Governor Punjab Salmaan Taseer earlier this year for his reported statement on the blasphemy laws.
The investigation officer submitted that the suspects were arrested in connection with an arson and mischief case pertaining to violence in Organi Town following the strike call given by the SIC. He sought the remand of the suspects to conduct an investigation and an identification parade of the suspects.
The counsel for the suspects, Khawaja Naveed Ahmed, vehemently opposed their remand, submitting that they had nothing to do with the alleged offence. He said that they were arrested by the police and other law enforcement agencies from the ST headquarters at midnight while the incident occurred in the morning.
Granting three days’ remand, the judge directed the investigation officer to conduct the identification parade of the suspects and submit a report by October 11.
Shamim Bano adds: The judicial magistrate (West) chided police for bringing Sunni Tehreek’s central leader and several activists on Saturday to his court in a case pertaining to arson and creating unrest on the eve of Friday’s strike called by Sunni Ittehad Council.
Sunni Tehreek (ST) leader Shahid Ghauri, Rabita Committee members Mobin Qadri and Nadeed Qadri along with other ST activists were produced in the court of Judicial Magistrate (West) Shahid Awan under a heavy police escort on Saturday.
They were arrested from Markaz-e-Ahle-Sunnat after a raid by law-enforcement agencies on Thursday night and were booked in a case of burning a bus and creating unrest in Orangi Town. Section 7-A of the Anti-Terrorism Act was also inserted in the FIR.
After checking the FIR, the magistrate directed the investigation officer to take them to an anti-terrorism court as the case did not fall in his jurisdiction. According to the law, a magistrate is not empowered to entertain the cases of ATCs.
Shahid Ghauri and other ST activists were arrested on the eve of the Sunni Ittehad Council’s strike against the decision of a Rawalpindi court that handed down the death sentence to Mumtaz Qadri for killing Punjab Governor Salmaan Taseer.
Meanwhile, ST chief Sarwat Ejaz Qadri condemned the arrest of their leaders and activists and said that the bus in Orangi Town was torched after their arrest and it was surprising that the police nominated them in arson and riot incidents in Orangi.
“It is mockery of the law that a person was arrested before an incident and nominated in the said case,” he said, adding the arrested ST activists should now be released since the TV footage proved their innocence.
Faheem Shaikh of the ST said that the law-enforcement agencies withdrew the cordon of the Sunni Tehreek office in the wee hours of Saturday, following which the activists assumed the control of the party office.
He said that the LEAs could not recover any unlawful material or weapons from the party office.