GWADAR/QUETTA: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s central leader Farrukh Habib, along with eight other people, was arrested in Gwadar by security forces.
Balochistan Caretaker Minister for Information Jan Achakzai confirmed to Dawn the arrest of the PTI leader with eight other people.
Officials said that Mr Habib reached Gwadar and was staying in a local hotel. On a tip-off about the presence of the PTI leader, who was minister of state for information in the PTI government and president of PTI’s western Punjab wing, security personnel in plain clothes conducted the raid and arrested Mr Habib and eight other people.
Those arrested in the raid include the brother and father-in-law of Mr Habib, who were taken to an unknown place after their arrest.
Party strongly condemns ‘enforced disappearance’
“The PTI leader reached Gwadar along with his brother, father-in-law and six other people to cross into Iran from Gwadar,” Mr Achakzai told Dawn.
After shifting Mr Habib, his brother and father-in-law to an unknown place, six other people were handed over to Gwadar police. However, the police, after initial investigation, released all the six people on bail.
Those released on bail were: Jawad Ehsan Raza, Muhammad Mohsin, Abdul Jabbar, Muhammad Nadeem, Muhammad Saqib Nasim and Mudassir. They belong to Lahore, Karachi and Bahawalpur.
PTI condemns enforced disappearance
Strongly reacting to the development, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf condemned what it called the abduction of PTI west Punjab’s president and former Minister of State Farrukh Habib and urged the Chief Justice of Pakistan to take immediate notice of the “shameful efforts of promoting lawlessness by the state kidnappers in the country so as to rein in the rising fascism and inhuman practice in the country”.
According to PTI’s Media Cell, a PTI spokesperson strongly condemned the enforced disappearance of Mr Habib and said that the alarming upsurge in the state operation and repression against the PTI ahead of the forthcoming general elections was a shameful attempt to push the PTI, the only federal political party, out of the electoral race.
The PTI spokesperson said that every tactic of cruelty, coercion and brutality was being used under the infamous plan to keep PTI Chairman Imran Khan and PTI out of the electoral arena because they were petrified of the PTI leader’s rising popularity in the country.
He said that after getting relief from the courts in fake and fabricated cases based on political revenge, the state machinery had resorted to shameful practice of enforced disappearances and abductions of PTI leaders and workers to render the courts ineffective.
Published in Dawn, September 29th, 2023