LAHORE: Gulberg police arrested two traders on Sunday for putting up notices containing degrading remarks for Ahmadiyya community at the entrance of their shops at Hafeez Centre, said a handout issued by Operations DIG Haider Ashraf.
The traders identified as Abid Hashmi and Nauman were presented before a judicial magistrate who sent them on a two-week judicial remand.
The police sought custody of the suspects to interrogate them. The counsel for the suspect, however, submitted that there was no need for it and requested the court to send his clients on judicial remand. He told the court that his clients had been implicated in a false case.
Tight security arrangements were made at the Model Town courts to avoid an untoward incident as the suspects were brought to the court.
A large crowd, including some traders from Hafeez Centre, had gathered in front of the court to protest the arrests. They chanted slogans in favour of the suspects and demanded their release.
The FIR registered under Sections 295-A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religious beliefs) of Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and 16 of the Maintenance of Public Order (MPO) stated that a police team had removed notices carrying derogatory remarks against the Ahmediyya community from the entrance of the suspects’ shops at Hafeez Centre.
Speaking to The Express Tribune, Hafeez Centre Traders’ Association president Farooq Butt had said traders from across the city would gather in front of Hafeez Centre and stage a protest against the arrests on Monday (today). “The police should refrain from intervening in matters related to our beliefs,” he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 14th, 2015.