LAHORE: A judicial magistrate has cancelled the bailable arrest warrants for actor Saba Qamar and singer Bilal Saeed in a case of alleged desecration of Wazir Khan Masjid after the duo personally appeared before the court on Friday.
The magistrate had issued the warrants for the duo for failing to appear before the court on Sept 8. However, they appeared before court the next day along with their lawyers and sought cancellation of the warrants.
“In the interest of justice, same is hereby accepted and bailable warrant for the arrest of accused persons – Saba Qamar and Bilal Saeed – are cancelled subject to submission of personal surety bonds in sum of Rs30,000 each for their appearance,” reads the order issued by Judicial Magistrate Jowaria Munir Bhatti.
Akbari Gate police had registered an FIR against the duo under section 295 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) following a court’s direction to act on an application filed by a lawyer as per law and decide whether a cognizable offence was made out.
The section 295 deals with the offence of injuring or defiling a place of worship, with intent to insult the religion of any class.
Advocate Farhat Manzoor Chandio, the complainant, pleaded that the culprits trampled upon the sanctity of the mosque by their act which also sparked a public outrage.
The defence counsel argued that the FIR was baseless and contrary to the facts. He said no dance or music was performed at the mosque as alleged in the FIR. He said the petitioners were innocent and falsely implicated in the case for ulterior motives.
Published in Dawn, September 11th, 2021