KARACHI: Sindh police on Monday booked a number of Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM) activists under charges of terrorism after the party organised a rally Sohrab Goth area of Karachi a day earlier.
The FIR (22/2019), registered on behalf of the State through Sohrab Goth SHO Rao Zakir, says the rally speakers used “undesirable language against state institutions”.
“The complainant SHO, who was patrolling the area, after receiving information rushed to the spot and asked the PTM president of the area, Naurazay Tareen, to furnish permission of the meeting.
“He [the organiser of the rally] became jittery, created hindrance in official work and chanted slogans against state institutions and police, while other people also joined him on the stage in raising slogans,” as per the FIR.
The police alleged that the organisers did not listen to the SHO and spread provocation, “creating an atmosphere of serious fear and chaos.”
The police invoked Sections 147, 149, 186, 153-A, 500 and 505 of the Pakistan Penal Code and 7-ATA (Anti-Terrorism Act) against 250-300 persons, including 16 identified by name.
Earlier, PTM lawmaker from North Waziristan Mohsin Dawar had taken to Twitter to highlight the arrest and subsequent disappearance of Alamzeb Mehsud, described as an active member of the PTM and a campaigner for missing persons.
— Mohsin Dawar (@mjdawar) January 21, 2019
The lawmaker said that the arrest was the latest in a series of incidents involving Sindh police and security agencies harassing PTM workers and activists following the party’s successful rally in Karachi on Sunday.
Dawar demanded immediate release of PTM workers in his message.
Videos of the incident surfaced on social media and show law enforcement officials in uniform and plain clothes intimidating young men, presumably belonging to the PTM, and pointing a handgun directly at a car’s occupants.
The regional chapter of Amnesty International also expressed concern over the disappearance of the PTM activist.
“We are concerned about reports of the disappearance of PTM activist Alamzeb Mehsud. His whereabouts must be disclosed immediately. Either produce him in court or release him without delay,” read a statement issued by the human rights watchdog.
“Mehsud was picked up from Karachi earlier today. Other PTM activists with him were allegedly beaten up. Freedom of peaceful assembly must be protected. Activists must never be attacked,” according to Amnesty International.