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Quetta court orders release of 6 PTM activists

February 09, 2019

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The activists had been arrested on January 31 during a protest against a bombing in Loralai which claimed nine lives. — File
The activists had been arrested on January 31 during a protest against a bombing in Loralai which claimed nine lives. — File

A sessions court in Quetta on Saturday ordered the release on bail of six activists of Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM), DawnNewsTV reported.

Police had arrested the activists from outside the Quetta Press Club on January 31 during a protest demonstration against a bombing in Loralai which claimed the lives of nine people.

Police officers had resorted to the use of tear gas to disperse the activists.

The held workers were later identified as Najeebullah, Muhammad Suleman, Saleh Muhammad, Mehboob Shah, Zainullah and Naik Muhammad. They had been sent to Quetta's district jail after their arrest by police.

Additional District and Sessions Judge Najeebullah Khan accepted the bail application of the PTM activists and ordered their release against a surety of Rs0.1 million each.

PTM is a rights-based alliance that, besides calling for the de-mining of the former tribal areas and greater freedom of movement in the latter, has insisted on an end to the practices of extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances and unlawful detentions, and for their practitioners to be held to account within a truth and reconciliation framework.

Editorial: Talks with PTM

In another incident earlier this week, rights acti­vist Gulalai Ismail — along with several workers of the PTM — was arrested for holding a protest demonstration outside the National Press Club in Islamabad to protest the death of PTM leader Arman Loni.

Ismail was initially shifted to the G-9 Women's Police Station when she was arrested on Tuesday. On Wednesday she was taken to Adiala jail. Later that evening, Islamabad Deputy Commissioner Hamza Shafqaat told Dawn that Ismail has been released.