KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) allowed on Wednesday the Muttahida Qaumi Movement leader, Amir Khan, accused of harbouring criminals and instigating terrorism, to go to Dubai for two weeks.
Since Khan is on bail on condition to stay within the country until the disposal of the case, he moved earlier this month an application through his counsel, Shaukat Hayat, in the ATC-IV and sought permission to go abroad citing personal reasons.
Hayat argued that his client wanted to meet his family residing in the United Arab Emirates for reasons which included financial matters. He submitted that Khan's two sons were studying at a university there and his presence was necessary for their academics.
On the other hand, special public prosecutor Rana Khalid apprehended that, if allowed, the suspect will not return to the country. He added that a suspect facing allegations of terrorism cannot be simply allowed to leave the country.
The arguments on the application were heard on Saturday after which the ATC-IV judge, Kausar Sultana, reserved her verdict. The judgment, which came on Wednesday, read that the accused will have to submit a surety of Rs2 million. The sum will be kept as a guarantee for his return and will be handed back when he will appear in court on the next given date. The judge has asked him to appear in person before her on January 11, 2016.
Khan was taken into custody in the March 11 raid at the MQM headquarters, Nine Zero. Eighty-six workers of the party were arrested, out of which, 60 were grilled by the Rangers for 90 days, while 26 were remanded to police custody. Following the expiry of his detention period, he was handed over to the police.
The prosecution alleges that Khan, being the security chief of Nine Zero, provided shelter to hardened criminals there. Khan was released on bail on July 29, nearly eight weeks after he was implicated in the case. During this time period, he has been to Saudi Arabia for Hajj. This will be the second time he will go abroad while being on bail.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 24th, 2015.
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