PTM lawmakers Wazir, Dawar granted bail in Kharqamar case


–Court asks MNAs to submit surety bonds of Rs1m each


PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court’s (PHC) Bannu bench on Wednesday accepted the bail pleas of incarcerated Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) lawmakers Ali Wazir and Mohsin Dawar in the Kharqamar military checkpoint attack case.

The PTM leaders will be released after the completion of legal formalities and have also been asked to provide surety bonds worth Rs1 million each.

In August, an anti-terrorism court had granted them bail in a case related to an IED attack on security forces in Kharqamar on May 26, while rejecting their plea in Kharqamar case.

The second first information report (FIR) registered by the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) in Bannu against the two MNAs following an attack which allegedly targeted an army convoy near a security checkpost in Kharqamar on June 7. The incident had claimed the lives of three officers and a soldier and left four security personnel injured.

Wazir, a South Waziristan MNA, was arrested right after the alleged clash, whereas Dawar managed to escape. He, however, surrendered himself after a few days.

They were being blamed for an alleged clash in Kharqamar, wherein 13 PTM activists lost their lives while dozens were injured, including five army soldiers.

The PTM claimed that the military opened fire on unarmed protesters, while the army’s media wing said it was PTM, led by MNAs Dawar and Wazir, that resorted to firing at the checkpost.

In a statement following the attack, the ISPR had said that the PTM MNAs were on the run.

However, on May 30, Dawar surrendered himself to the law and was subsequently produced before an anti-terrorism court in Bannu for physical remand.

The investigation officer of the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) Bannu requested the court for 30-day police custody of the lawmaker. However, special ATC judge Babar Ali Khan remanded Dawar in police custody for eight days and asked the police to produce him before the court on June 7.

In an alleged video circulating on social media, Dawar had said that a “curfew had been imposed in Waziristan” and his native village and the ones located near it had been “surrounded by security forces”.

“I cannot put the people through more trouble for myself,” Dawar said, announcing that he would surrender to police.