Islamabad: Afghan national granted bail
ISLAMABAD: An Afghan national, who hid in the toilet of a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) plane before its departure to Canada last year, was granted bail by Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) Kamran Basharat Mufti on Friday.
A first information report (FIR) was registered against Muhammad Rasool with the Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) Anti-human Trafficking Wing under section 14 of the Foreigner Act.
According to a FIA official, flight PK-781 from Karachi to Canada landed at Benazir Bhutto International Airport on December 23, 2011. After all passengers, including those whose destination was Canada, had disembarked; the Airport Security Force (ASF) started searching the plane.
Inside one of the toilets, they found a man who had boarded the plane from Karachi. FIA officials said that the accused did not have any documents with him when he was taken into custody. The man was later identified as 26-year-old Muhammad Rasool, an Afghan national, who was trying to go to Toronto.
During proceedings on Friday, FIA officials informed the court that six international mobile SIM cards, 1,000 Afghani currency and US $135 were recovered from his possession.
The counsel of the accused filed a bail after arrest petition, which stated that the accused had falsely been implicated in the case. He said that the accused had a valid Afghani passport, and a valid Pakistani visa. He added that the FIA had not produced any CCTV footage of the incident, and said that his client maintained that he had been arrested from outside the airport, and not from within the plane.
After hearing both arguments the ASJ remarked that according to law and evidence it was clear that the petitioners stay in Pakistan had not been illegal, but his purported escape to Canada had cast some doubt over the matter. The ASJ adjourned the hearing until January 20.