KARACHI: Police on Saturday registered a case against 39 arrested workers of the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan on terrorism and other charges as they allegedly clashed with law enforcers during a protest on Friday against the acquittal of Aasia Bibi by the Supreme Court, police officials said.

Later they were remanded to prison.

“New Town police have registered an FIR (22/2019) against the 39 TLP leaders and workers under 7-ATA (Anti-Terrorism Act of 1997) and riots etc charges,” said East DIG Amir Farooqi.

All the activists were arrested on Friday afternoon when they allegedly damaged public and private properties, he added.

The case has been registered on behalf of the state through police officer Mohammed Mithal of the New Town police station.

The police have also invoked various other sections of the Pakistan Penal Code against the held workers.

According to contents of the FIR obtained by Dawn, 300 to 350 workers of the TLP came out from Bahar-i-Shariat Masjid situated on Alamgir Road in Bahadurabad soon after Friday prayers and started protest at the Sharfabad traffic intersection.

“They blocked the main road and tried to damage private and public vehicles.”

The police officers present there tried to stop the angry mob from damaging property but “the angry mob attacked the police party by creating hindrance in performance of official duty and pelted stones on the policemen,” according to the FIR.

The policemen moved back to save themselves but the angry mob chanted slogans against the police and attacked a police mobile with sticks and stones, damaging the vehicle.

The administrative judge of antiterrorism courts on Saturday remanded the 39 TLP workers to prtison in the rioting case.

Police produced the suspects before the court and contended that they had gathered at a traffic signal within the limits of New Town police station and staged an allegedly violent protest.

The administrative judge of the ATCs, Karachi, sent them to prison on judicial remand and directed the investigating officer to file an investigation report at the next hearing.

Published in Dawn, February 3rd, 2019