RAWALPINDI: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Monday declared Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri a proclaimed offender, directing authorities to arrest the mercurial cleric on charges of attacking police officials during the protest he led in Islamabad.
Special Judge Chaudhry Abdul Qayyum ordered the PAT chief should be arrested in response to an FIR registered by Lilla police station in Jhelum.
According to details, PAT workers had gathered at the Lilla Interchange and staged a demonstration on Qadri’s call. The workers allegedly attacked and injured police officials, after which they were arrested and charged under the Anti-Terrorism Act.
Qadri, who is currently in the United States for medical treatment, has dismissed speculation that he might not return to the country. Before leaving Pakistan, the PAT chief had said: “I will continue to fulfill my commitment until my last breath.”
Earlier, on September 12, the judge had issued arrest warrants for Qadri and 95 of his followers on charges of attacking and kidnapping policemen.
Qadri along with Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Imran Khan have already been declared proclaimed offenders in a case related to the attack on SSP Asmatullah Junejo.
On September 1, about 50 protesters allegedly from the PTI and PAT, attacked SSP Junejo and seriously injured the officer.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 16th, 2014.