Imaan arrested again after bail in sedition case

Our Correspondent
Tuesday, Aug 29, 2023

ISLAMABAD. Anti-Terrorist Court (ATC) Islamabad Judge Abul Hasnat Zulqarnain granted bail to human rights lawyer Imaan Mazari, but she was arrested again from outside Adiala Jail in another case, registered against, here on Monday.

The court approved post-arrest bail of Imaan Mazari and Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM) leader Ali Wazir in a sedition case against surety bonds of Rs30,000 each.

Taking to the social media platform X, the Islamabad police confirmed Imaan’s arrest. They said she was arrested on a first information report (FIR) registered at the Bara Kahu Police Station under Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA).

However, digital rights activist Usama Khilji claimed that the FIR was not shared with Imaan’s lawyers present outside the jail.

On Aug 19, two FIRs were registered against Imaan and Wazir, at Tarnol police station and the Counter-Terrorism Department police station, following a rally of the PTM in the federal capital. Both were booked on the charges of sedition, preventing the government officials from carrying out their duties and damaging the public property. Subsequently, the two had been sent on 14-day judicial remand for delivering controversial speech against the state institutions.

Imaan Mazari had earlier secured bail in the second case related to damaging government property and interfering in the affairs of the state during a protest that was held on August 18 as well, after a local judge accepted her application.

However, the judicial magistrate remanded former lawmaker Ali Wazir. During the proceedings of the sedition case on Monday, prosecutor requested ATC Judge Abul Hasnat Zulqarnain to grant an extension in the accused’s remand.

The transcript of Imaan’s speech at the rally was also read out during the hearing. Opposing the request for bail, the prosecutor further argued that the report of the USB was still awaited and the forensics of the event still had to be done. However, the court accepted both the lawyer as well as PTM leader’s bail for Rs30,000 surety bonds each.