LAHORE: The Lahore High Court has ordered the release of Shahid Aziz alias Gullu Butt, dropping charges of vandalism outside the Minhajul Quran secretariat in Model Town against him.
The division bench, headed by Justice Tariq Abbasi, dropped sections of Anti Terrorism Act against him and ordered his release after the completion of his jail term in other charges under the Pakistan Penal Code.
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An anti-terrorism court had, on October 30, 2014, awarded Gullu Butt a collective sentence of 11 years and three months under different sections of the law. The court had also imposed a fine of Rs140,100 on the convict.
During an anti-encroachment operation outside the residence of Dr Tahirul Qadri in June 2014, Butt had vandalised private cars parked outside the premises in the presence of the police. Police personnel did not stop Butt and were on the contrary seen to be encouraging him. His act of vandalism was caught by TV cameras.
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Appearing before the court, Advocate Kashif Zaidi submitted that one cannot be charged with terrorism for merely breaking the windscreens of cars. The lawyer insisted that since his client had not spread any terror his trial was wrongfully referred to the anti-terrorism court.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 10th, 2017.
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