LAHORE: A judicial magistrate on Thursday granted one-time exemption from personal appearance to actor Saba Qamar and singer Bilal Saeed in a case of alleged desecration of Wazir Khan mosque and sought arguments on their acquittal applications.
Both suspects did not appear before the court and their counsel filed two separate applications seeking exemption from personal appearance.
The counsel also filed acquittal applications on behalf of the suspects requesting the court to decide the same before framing the charges in the case.
Magistrate Javeria Munir Bhatti allowed the application for one-time exemption and sought arguments on the acquittal pleas on the next hearing.
Akbari Gate police had registered a first information report against the duo under section 295 of Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) following a court’s direction to act on an application of a lawyer as per law and decide whether a cognisable offence was made out.
The section 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 an outrage among the citizens.
On the other side, the defence counsel argued that the FIR was baseless and contrary to the facts. He said no dance or music took place 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, October 15th, 2021