LAHORE: PTI’s Pun­jab chapter president Dr Yasmin Rashid was arrested again, just hours after the Lahore High Court had ordered her release along with 17 other women workers of the party detained under the Maintenance of Public Order (MPO).

In a midnight development, Dr Yasmin was ‘arrested’ again, this time in cases registered at three different police stations of Lahore. However, due to her medical condition, the police decided to keep her at Services Hospital, where she had been taken from Kot Lakhpat jail after the court ordered her release.

On petitions challenging the detention of the PTI leaders and workers, Justice Safdar Saleem Shahid of the LHC had ordered release of the 18 women detained under the MPO, if not required in any criminal case.

Earlier, Advocate Sika­ndar Zulqarnain argued on behalf of the petitioners that the detained persons included responsible members of the bar and household women. He said they were neither active members of any political party nor invol­ved in any anti-state activities.

Additional Advocate General Ghulam Sarwar Nehang opposed the petitions and stated that the district government lawfully issued the detention orders of the persons involved in violent protests against the state.

He said the petitioners had not availed the first remedy in the law and directly moved the court. He pointed out that three of the detained women had already released due to a death in their family.

Advocate Ahmad Awais contended that Dr Yasmin was an elderly person and a cancer survivor.

The law officer said Dr Yasmin led the protest and provoked her party workers for violence.

The judge suspended the impugned notificat­i­o­­ns issued under section 3 of MPO and ordered the government to release the remaining detained persons. He also sought rep­l­ies from the government on the petitions till May 22.

Earlier, the husband of PTI’s former lawmaker Alia Hamza filed a petition in the LHC, challenging the detention order of his wife issued by the government.

Petitioner Hamza Jamil Malik contended that the police barged into their house and abducted his wife on May 10. He said later the district government issued detention order of the PTI leader under MPO on May 11. He asked the court to set aside the detention order and direct the government to release her.

Published in Dawn, May 14th, 2023

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