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PTI's four lawmakers, three councillors acquitted in rioting case.

KARACHI -- A judicial magistrate (South) acquitted on Thursday four lawmakers and three councillors belonging to the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf in a rioting case.

The lawmakers MNA Dr Arif Alvi, MPAs Khurram Sher Zaman, Samar Ali Khan and Dr Seema Zia along with the three councillors and some area residents were charged with storming the office of the Cantonment Board Clifton (CBC) in April and threatening the staff during a protest demonstration against imposition of a new tax on supply of water through tankers. The protesters had demanded that water be supplied through pipelines.

A case was registered under Sections 147 (rioting), 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object), 452 (house-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of fifty rupees), 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) on the complaint of a CBC official at the Darakhshan police station.

The court had formally framed charges against the legislators and councillors in August 2017, but they had not pleaded guilty and opted to contest the case.

On Saturday, defence counsel Riaz Affendi moved an application under Section 249-K of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), arguing that the complainant had booked his clients in a fake case, as it was a fact that there was no drinking water being supplied to the citizens in the metropolis.

He further argued that staging a peaceful protest was a right of the applicants, who were elected representatives and bore the responsibility to raise voice for the rights of citizens. Therefore, the court was pleaded to acquit the PTI leaders.

Garbage throwers released

Meanwhile, a judicial magistrate (East) on Thursday released three suspects on executing personal bonds in a case pertaining to throwing of garbage into the Malir River.

Police claimed to have arrested Badshah Khan, Zubair and Ikram for allegedly dumping garbage into the Malir River in violation of the ban imposed by the provincial home department on throwing garbage into storm-water drains in the metropolis.

The Korangi Industrial Area police had booked them in a case registered under Section 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

However, the judicial magistrate (East) ordered release of both the suspects on executing personal bonds, as they undertook not to indulge in such acts in future.

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Publication:Dawn (Karachi, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:May 25, 2018
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