OKARA: Hundreds of Okara Military Farms tenants, including women, on Sunday held a protest demonstration against detention of Anjumane Mazareen Punjab (AMP) secretary general Mehr Abdul Sattar near 4/4L village, demanding his release and withdrawal of “fake cases”.

The AMP leader was arrested by police from his house at the village on Saturday after District Coordination Officer Suqrat Imam Rana issued his 30-day detention orders under Section 16 of the Maintenance of Public Order (MPO).

Mr Sattar had announced to hold a peasants’ convention in connection with the International Day of Peasants on April 17 in violation of Section 144 imposed by the DCO in the district, despite being warned against doing so through an official notice.

Soon after his arrest, scores of tenants held protest demos and tried to block the GT Road but were dispersed by police by firing teargas shells.

On Sunday, a large of male and female tenants gathered near the 4/4L village and protested arrest of the AMP leader.

Raising slogans against police and administrations, they demanded immediate release of Mr Sattar and withdrawal of what they called “fake cases” registered against the AMP leadership and activists.

The gathering was addressed by Awami Workers Party (AWP) Pakistan secretary general Farooq Tariq, its women wing Punjab president Ms Nazli Javed, AWP Sindh secretary general Ammar Jan Khan, AMP Probinabad Farms president Yaseen Tund, AMP Kulyana Estate women wing president Ms Badrun Nisa and Zafar Iqbal Roomi.

The speakers condemned the administration’s action of detaining Mr Sattar.

According to Advocate Noor Nabi, AMP media advisor, on Saturday night police had also arrested some tenants, including Abdur Rashid and Mushtaq of 24/4L, Ghulam Muhammad of 46/3R, Iqbal and Allah Rakha of 9/4L, Niamat Ali of 12/4L, Asghar Ali and Attique of 3/4L, Muhammad Hussain of 4/4L, Ashraf of 15/4L and a woman Sughran Bibi of 29/4L.

Published in Dawn, April 18th, 2016