Civil Secretariat protest: Five officials accused of vandalism get bail

Former Special Branch chief granted protection from FIA arrest.


Our Correspondent August 15, 2012

LAHORE:


A division bench of the Lahore High Court on Wednesday granted post-arrest bail to five employees of the Population Welfare Department (PWD) accused of vandalising state property at the Civil Secretariat.


The bench, which included Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi and Justice Mazhar Iqbal Sidhu, directed Waseem Dar, Imran Ahmed, Usman, Akram and Abid to furnish surety bonds of Rs100,000 each to secure bail.

On May 17, Population Welfare Department employees from across the province converged on the Civil Secretariat in protest over concerns that the government was planning to merge Poulation Welfare with the Health Department, and to demand regular jobs for contract employees and revision of pay scales.

The protestors climbed over the barricades and stormed the building.

The police had arrested 172 of the PWD employees at the protest, later releasing 166. Of the remaining six, five were granted bail on Wednesday. The sixth person accused of vandalism has not been turning up for hearings.

Khawaja Sharif ‘murder plot’

Also on Wednesday, the Lahore High Court granted protective bail to a former police intelligence officer accused of feeding false information to the government and the press. Former Punjab Police Special Branch chief Col (retired) Ehsanur Rehman and others are accused of cooking up a false intelligence report of a plot to murder former LHC chief justice Khawaja Muhammad Sharif.

The court granted Col (r) Rehman bail till August 30 and directed the accused to approach the trial court for confirmation of his bail.

The court had earlier granted protective bail to Tauqir Shah, the former principal secretary to the chief minister, Talha Burki, former staff officer to the CM, Special Branch Punjab Director Shahid Mahmood, and two other Special Branch personnel, Muhammad Azam and Ijaz Ahmad.

The Federal Investigation Agency had registered an FIR against them on charges that they cooked up a false intelligence report in order to create differences among the federal and provincial governments and the judiciary.

Rehman has denied any role in the alleged conspiracy. He submitted through his counsel that the FIA falsely implicated him in the case at the behest of the federal government.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 16th, 2012.

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