ATC to decide if Dr Akmal Waheed will be released on bail today

Lawyer Mohammad Farooq tells the court that his client is being detained because of a police complaint.

Saba Imtiaz August 15, 2012

KARACHI: An Anti-Terrorism Court in Karachi will decide a request for bail from Dr Akmal Waheed’s lawyer on Thursday.

Dr Akmal Waheed and his brothers have been written about extensively because of the number of cases against them alleging their involvement or support to militant networks, and because they have been repeatedly detained by intelligence agencies.

Dr Waheed’s lawyer Mohammad Farooq had applied for bail on Monday under section 21-D of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) of 1997. The special public prosecutor told the court that he would need time. Thursday was fixed for the hearing.

Dr Akmal was not present in court on Wednesday. However, he will be in court Thursday when his remand period expires. According to Dr Akmal Waheed’s family, he returned to Karachi on a 2 am flight on August 8. He was taken into police custody on arrival and presented in ATC I on Friday. Dr Akmal is being detained reportedly because he violated the undertaking with the police that he had to report on his location and did not inform them before he left for the UAE. The police reportedly filed a First Information Report against him after he left.

Dr Akmal was detained on arrival in Karachi last week by the Gulshan-e-Iqbal police for an apparent violation of the fourth schedule. He was remanded in police custody last Saturday and the remand was extended on Monday by the ATC-I.

Dr Akmal’s lawyer Mohammad Farooq told the ATC I that there was no First Information Report registered against his client at the moment and he had only been detained because of a police complaint. Dr Akmal Waheed – whose brothers have also been implicated in terrorism cases and have faced enforced disappearances – was acquitted by the Supreme Court of the charges. At the time, it is believed that he had agreed to report to the police about his whereabouts.

Dr Arshad Waheed is believed to have been killed in a drone strike in South Waziristan.

Their brothers, Ajmal and Osama Waheed, are alleged victims of enforced disappearances. Osama Waheed had been implicated in several militancy cases but was cleared of the charges. The two brothers reportedly went missing after their arrival in Karachi on July 1, 2011.

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


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