QUETTA: PTI leader Azam Khan Swati being escorted by former deputy speaker of National Assembly Qasim Suri out of Balochistan High Court premises after a case hearing on Sunday.—PPI
QUETTA: PTI leader Azam Khan Swati being escorted by former deputy speaker of National Assembly Qasim Suri out of Balochistan High Court premises after a case hearing on Sunday.—PPI

QUETTA: A local court on Sunday remanded Senator Azam Swati, a senior leader of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, in police custody for five days.

Police officials, who had shifted Mr Swati to Quetta after taking his custody in Islamabad on Friday last week, produced the PTI senator before the court of judicial magistrate Abdul Sattar Bugti and requested for a 10-day remand.

However, the court, after hearing arguments from both sides, rejected the plea and remanded him in police custody for five days with an order to produce the suspect after the completion of the remand.

Police brought the PTI senator to the court amid tight security and no unconcerned person was allowed to enter the court premises. Some PTI leaders were present on the occasion.

Five FIRs were registered against the PTI senator with different police stations of Balochistan, including Quetta and Kuchlak, on charges of using abusive language in a public meeting and objectionable tweets against the officers of Pakistan Army and state institutions. He was arrested on Nov 27.

Meanwhile, PTI’s Balochistan president Qasim Suri termed the shifting of Azam Swati to Quetta in extreme cold weather and registration of five FIRs unfair and injustice while he was facing health issues.

Talking to the media outside the court, the former deputy speaker of the National Assembly said it was an order of the Supreme Court that when an FIR was lodged at one place, there should be no FIR at another place on same charges. “The 75-year-old senator is facing multiple health issues.”

Mr Suri wondered what crime Azam Swati had committed on the basis of which he is being subjected to abuse. He regretted that on the one hand, FIA of assassination attempt on the life of PTI Chairman Imran Khan is not being registered and, on the other, the entire party leadership is being booked in various cases.

The PTI leader said such arrests and cases could not force the PTI and its leadership to abandon their struggle which they launched for restoration of democracy and holding of new elections in the country to get rid of “imported government installed through a conspiracy”.

Published in Dawn, December 5th, 2022

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