LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court on Thursday remanded 22 employees of a housing scheme owned by former provincial minister Abdul Aleem Khan in two-day police custody for their involvement in torture on an anti-encroachment team.

The Chuhng police produced the arrested security guards and other employees of the housing scheme before the court.

An investigating officer told the court that the suspects attacked a team of district government and the Ravi Urban Development Authority (Ruda) when they started an operation to retrieve state land encroached by ParkView housing scheme.

Asked whether the alleged torture had been established, the IO told the court that evidence was being collected against the suspects. He said the physical remand of the suspects was required to complete the investigation.

Opposing the remand, a counsel on behalf of the suspects argued that the government’s team was demolishing the constructed homes in the society when the residents and the security staff offered resistance. He said the district administration and Ruda carried out the operation in violation of the stay orders issued by the Lahore High Court.

The counsel alleged that the government was victimising the owner of the society in the name of implementation of Ruda’s law. He asked the court to deny physical remand of the suspects to the police and send them to jail on judicial remand.

After hearing both sides, presiding judge Ms Abher Gul Khan granted the police two-day physical remand of the suspects.

Published in Dawn, September 30th, 2022

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