KARACHI: The Anti-Terrorism Court-III dismissed an application to transfer a case of rioting and violence in Lyari to a lower court.
The defence counsel and special public prosecutor had made their arguments, following which the court ruled on Wednesday.
The application was filed by the defence counsel under section 23 of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1997, which deals with the Anti-Terrorism Courts’ power to transfer cases to a regular court.
The case in question deals with an episode of violence in the precincts of the Baghdadi police station earlier this year. Only one of the men accused in the case, Sajjad Khatri, has been arrested. Special Public Prosecutor Abdul Maroof Maher argued that the accused had committed an act of terrorism by committing arson and holding people hostage in the area by spreading violence.
The prosecution stated that this case could not be transferred to a regular court. The court dismissed the defence counsel’s application and has set September 12 for the next hearing.
The First Information Report was filed under sections of the Pakistan Penal Code that deal with punishments for rioting with armed weapons, unlawful assembly, using criminal force to prevent public servants from doing their duty, attempted murder, ‘mischief by fire or explosive substance’, causing mischief and common intent and under section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act.
The men accused in the case who have not been arrested include Uzair Baloch, Zafar Baloch, Habib Jan Baloch, Rashid Bengali, Sheeraz, whose alias is Comrade, Jabbar Jengio, Ghaffar Niazi, Jamshed Sonnara, Amin Buledi, Farhan Muta, Ahmed and Sattar Peera. The court issued non-bailable warrants for the men on August 11.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 6th, 2012.