Ali Wazir sees ‘threats to his life’, shifted back to prison

Published June 24, 2022 - Updated June 24, 2022 08:24am

KARACHI: South Waziristan MNA Ali Wazir was shifted back to the central jail on Thursday evening after he complained of being ‘uncomfortable’ at the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Complex (JPMC), where he was shifted for treatment on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, the MNA held a protest outside the hospital and addressed his supporters, claiming his life was in danger and that he felt suffocated at the hospital. His protest continued until late at night.

An official source said it appeared the authorities were reluctant to shift the lawmaker to Islamabad to attend the budget session of the National Assembly even though his production orders have been issued by the speaker.

He said Pashto-speaking officers held talks with the MNA and persuaded him to end his protest over assurances that he would be shifted back to the prison. The authorities concerned also approached the hospital administration to shift Wazir back to the prison to avoid any law and order situation at the health facility.

Therefore, the doctors in their report stated the MNA was ‘okay’ to be shifted to the prison, but ‘not fit to fly’, indicating that he may not be taken to Islamabad.

PTM leader Muhammad Sher Mehsud said Ali Wazir started a ‘protest’ at 4pm on Wednesday as he wasn’t allowed to meet relatives, friends and party workers. For the lawmaker, the atmosphere at the hospital was more suffocating as he was told to remain confined to his bed. Mr Ali was shifted to the hospital for physiotherapy. Police officials held talks with the MNA until late at night, and it was agreed that he would be shifted back to the prison on Thursday evening.

Addressing PTM workers and his supporters at his ‘protest’ outside the hospital on Wednesday night, the MNA had claimed that his life was in danger at the JPMC where he was shifted from the Central Prison for treatment, and demanded he be shifted back to the jail or taken to the National Assembly for the budget session as his production orders has been issued by the speaker.

Wazir had claimed he had been attacked twice at the hospital -- first on the day he was admitted to the hospital and later on Wednesday night.

A police official, who wished not to be named, claimed the lawmaker was not attacked, adding no complaint had been filed with the police by Wazir or his party.

“My demand is that I should be sent back to jail as I feel insecure here,” claimed the legislator.

“My second demand is that since the NA speaker has issued a production order for me, I should be taken to Islamabad to attend the budget session so I can plead for problems in my constituency.’’

He protested that this was the second time he was being barred from attending the budget session though the speaker had issued his production orders. He claimed he had submitted an application to the jail authorities for medical treatment a couple of years ago, but he was not facilitated. This time, he claimed, he was shifted to hospital mainly to deprive him from attending the budget session in the National Assembly, where lawmakers could talk about the problems being faced by their voters.

Wazir said his demands were not “illegal” nor had he committed any corruption or was involved in any acts or terrorism, wondering why he was being deprived from attending the assembly session.

Published in Dawn, June 24th, 2022

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