PESHAWAR: An anti-terrorism court here has indicted around 115 Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf leaders, including current and former lawmakers, and workers for last year’s violent protest that claimed a life and damaged public property.

The accused pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Judge Iqbal Khan scheduled the next hearing for June 26 and directed prosecution witnesses to appear before him on that date.

Noted among the accused were MNAs Arbab Sher Ali and Asif Khan, former Peshawar district nazim Arbab Mohammad Asim, MPAs Fazal Ilahi Khan and Meena Khan, and former MPAs Taimoor Saleem Jhagra, Kamran Bangash, Arif Yousaf and Wajid Ali.

The FIR of the violence was registered at Peshawar’s Khan Raziq Shaheed police station on May 10, 2023, under different provisions of the Pakistan Penal Code and Anti-Terrorism Act.

The complainant in the FIR, sub-inspector Roman Khan, insisted that scores of people gathered near the Balahisar Fort protesting the arrest of PTI leader Imran Khan.

He alleged that the protesters attacked public and private properties, torched an ambulance of the Edhi Foundation, damaged several ATM machines, and smashed the main gate of a women’s college.

The complainant added that the protesters also dismantled grills around the greenbelt outside the fort and resorted to firing that resulted in a man’s death.

The police named 29 suspects in the FIR but later charged more people with committing violence amid claims that they’re identified through CCTV footage of the protests.

The court granted them pre-arrest or regular bail from time to time.

The accused had claimed that they were falsely implicated in the case as no evidence was available to connect them with the offence.

Published in Dawn, June 12th, 2024

Opinion

Editorial

Afghan challenge
Updated 15 Jul, 2024

Afghan challenge

Foreign states must emphasise to the Afghan Taliban diplomatic recognition and trade relations all depend on greater counterterrorism efforts.
‘Complete’ justice
15 Jul, 2024

‘Complete’ justice

NOW that the matter of PTI’s reserved seats stands resolved, there are several equally pressing issues pertaining...
Drug fog
15 Jul, 2024

Drug fog

THE country has an old drug problem. While the menace has raged across divides of class and gender, successive ...
Miles to go
Updated 14 Jul, 2024

Miles to go

Some reforms agreed with the Fund are going to seriously impact economic growth and fresh investments, at least in the short term.
Iddat ruling
14 Jul, 2024

Iddat ruling

IT was a needless, despicable spectacle which only ended up uniting both conservatives and progressives in ...
Cricket shake-up
14 Jul, 2024

Cricket shake-up

SOMEONE had to take the blame and bear the brunt of the fallout from Pakistan’s disastrous showing at the T20 ...