PESHAWAR: An anti-terrorism court here granted bail to around 80 suspects arrested in connection with the ransacking and looting of the Radio Pakistan Peshawar building and attack on the regional office of Election Commission of Pakistan during violent protests of May 9 and 10.

The court, while accepting multiple petitions, directed the petitioners to furnish two surety bonds of Rs100,000 each.

“No doubt, a serious crime has been committed against the state whereas valuable state as well as private properties were destroyed and a serious wave of terror was spread across the society but was it the doing of any of the accused/petitioner whose bail petitions are pending before this court is shrouded in mystery and is yet to be seen at later stage probably after further investigation or at trial,” the court observed.

The court observed that in the light of available evidence on record case of all the accused/petitioners was that of further inquiry.

The bail petitions pertained to two FIRs -- one registered against attacking and burning of the Peshawar radio station and the other one about damaging the entrance to the ECP’s regional office.

The court observed that there was no evidence on record in the shape of CCTV footage or identification parade of the suspects/petitioners by any of the officers of the ECP that the suspects/petitioners arrested at the spot had ever entered the office of the commission or they had caused damage to the building of the commission or had attempted to put on fire and damage vehicles parked there.

The court observed that the petitioners had also not confessed their guilt before the magistrate nor any recovery was made from them.

Published in Dawn, May 26th, 2023

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