KARACHI: “I am an honorable citizen and have no links with Baitullah Mehsud,” said elderly Fazal Hussain Mehsud.
Mehsud, alias Baba, had been arrested by the Crime Investigation Department (CID) for harbouring the alleged leader of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).
He was presented before Judicial MagistrateWest Muhammad Afzal Roshan on Tuesday by the CID seeking a physical remand.
The court dismissed the charges and allowed his counsel to move a bail application, under section 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code, and was fined for Rs50,000 in cash.
The CID policemen were shocked at court’s decision to instantly release a man whose arrest had been a police breakthrough against the TTP.
Mehsud came to collect his bail papers at the city courts on Wednesday. He told The Express Tribune that he did not have any connection with the TTP and said he was only arrested because his name is Mehsud. “If I was a Taliban supporter or close friend of Baitullah Mehsud, I would be living in Afghanistan or in the tribal areas of Pakistan with them,” said Fazal Hussain. “What would I be doing here in Karachi.”
The defence lawyer, Zahooruddin Mehsud, said that his client was kept in illegal custody for five days. He was arrested from Federal B Area when he was going home after taraweeh on August 10. The FIR was lodged against him in Jackson police station on August 15, under 13D, Arms Ordinance. The police were unable to substantiate charges against him so he was set free.
The lawyer lauded the judiciary. “This is the new judiciary, independent and bold.”
The CID police claimed that Mehsud provided shelter to Baitullah Mehsud in Karachi after he was injured in Waziristan.
They also alleged that he nurses TTP men who are injured in battles against Pakistani forces in the northern regions and then come to Karachi for treatment.
According to the CID, Fazal also provides funds to the Taliban from Karachi and is actively involved in many operations in Wana and Waziristan against the military and security agencies.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 18th, 2011.