PESHAWAR/ ISLAMABAD: A lawmaker accused of leading an assault on a security check post in North Waziristan was arrested on Thursday, sources said.
Details of the arrest of MNA Mohsin Javed Dawar – who belongs to Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) – were not immediately clear.
However, sources said Dawar was presented before an anti-terrorism court (ATC) after his arrest, which granted his eight-day remand. Subsequently, he was shifted to Peshawar.
Family sources told The Express Tribune that Mohsin Dawar turned himself in after a Jirga advised him to surrender and defend himself in the court of law.
Another MNA from North Waziristan, Ali Wazir, is already in police custody over charges of leading the May 26 attack on Kharqamar check post in the Boya area of the tribal district.
According to the military’s media wing, the two lawmakers incited a group of people to attack the check post in an attempt to forcibly secure the release of a terrorists’ facilitator triggering a fire exchange which resulted in multiple casualties.
Ali Wazir remanded in CTD custody for 8 days
“Troops at the check post exercised maximum restraint in the face of provocation and direct firing on the post. Due to firing of the group, five army soldiers got injured. In the exchange of fire, three individuals who attacked the post lost their lives and 10 got injured,” the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), said.
Wazir was produced in an ATC in Bannu on Monday and was remanded in custody of the Counter-Terrorism Department for eight days.
The two lawmakers deny the charge.
The chief military spokesperson, Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, said at the time that “innocent supporters of PTM need care” as “only a few [individuals] are inciting and using them against state institutions for vested agenda.”
The federal cabinet has strongly condemned the Waziristan check post assault and said the nation stands shoulder to shoulder with the tribal citizens for their rights and safety to life and property.
“However, no restraint will be observed against those who insult the national flag and put national security at stake,” Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said while briefing the media about the cabinet decisions on Tuesday.
The North Waziristan incident was unfortunate as miscreants had challenged the writ of the state by attacking the army check post where a soldier embraced martyrdom, she added.
The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has called for the formation of a parliamentary commission to “establish the truth”.
The HRCP expressed alarm over the use of military force and said such actions “will be detrimental to the interests of the country and its citizens.”
“This [May 26 incident] will further escalate tensions between PTM supporters and security institutions, consequently leading to a permanent wedge between the people of tribal districts and the state. There must be a serious attempt to genuinely address the grievances of the local population, which the PTM has been articulating peacefully for well over a year,” the rights body said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Senator Barrister Saif said PTM leader Manzoor Pashteen met a Senate panel where a coordination committee was formed to discuss issues.
“PTM's leader Manzoor Pashteen came to meet Senate's committee of National Cohesion today. We have discussed and decided to form a "Rabta committee", comprising of 3 reps from PTM and 5 reps from Senate. In order to resolve current snd future issues,” Senator Said wrote on his official Twitter handle.
PTM's leader Manzoor Pashteen came to meet Senate's committee of National Cohesion today. We have discussed and decided to form a "Rabta committee", comprising of 3 reps from PTM and 5 reps from Senate. In order to resolve current snd future issues. More details to follow. pic.twitter.com/QxhtxJeODt— Senator Barrister Saif (@SenatorSaif) May 30, 2019
The committee comprises Senator Barrister Saif, Senator Sitara Ayaz, Senator Dilawar Khan, Senator Naseebullah Baezai, and Senator Sajid Turi, from the Senate panel’s side, and Liaqat Khan Kashif, Azam Chisti, and Abdul Saleem Yousufzai from the PTM side.
Rabta Committee members for PTM Issue:— Senator Barrister Saif (@SenatorSaif) May 30, 2019
From Senate Committee of National Cohesion:
Sen Barrister Saif
Sen Sitara Ayaz
Sen Dilawar Khan
Sen Naseebullah Baezai
Sen Sajid Turi
Kashif Azam Chisti
Abdul Saleem Yousufzai pic.twitter.com/I28hOHgeos