ATC acquits President Alvi, ministers in Parliament attack case

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: The anti-terrorism court has acquitted President Arif Alvi, federal ministers and other PTI leaders in a case pertaining to an attack on the Parliament House and Pakistan Television (PTV).

ATC Judge Muhammad Ali Warraich announced the verdict on Tuesday.

The court reserved the judgement on President Alvi’s plea to acquit him in the parliament attack case after abolishing his presidential immunity as requested by him on March 4.

Besides President Alvi, the court acquitted PTI leaders including Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Defence Minister Pervaiz Khattak, Minister for Planning Asad Umar, Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood, PTI leaders Jehangir Tareen, Aleem Khan, Saif Ullah Niazi, Ijaz Chaudhry and others in the same case.

The court had reserved the verdict after hearing arguments from the lawyers of all the accused and pronounced it today.

The prosecution had also backed the acquittal pleas filed by the accused.

Defence Minister Khattak who appeared before the court told the media after hearing that on the day of attack on the parliament he was asleep at home. He said he had no idea why his name was included in the case. He advised his opponents that they should think before taking any action.

The president and several others were booked in the parliament and PTV attack case in 2014 during PTI’s sit-in against the then PML-N government.

During an anti-government protest on Aug 31, 2014, the PTI and Tahirul Qadri’s Pakistan Awami Tehreek activists headed to the PM House. The law enforcement agencies were ordered to thwart opposition’s march which led to clashes between the police and PTI and PAT activists. As a result, three PAT workers were killed and hundreds of others, including both demonstrators and policemen, were wounded during the scuffle.

PTI Chief Imran Khan, PAT leader Tahirul Qadri and others along with hundreds of protesters had briefly seized and shut down the PTV on September 1, 2014. The transmission of the PTV News and PTV World was cut off for almost half an hour. Then army troops had moved in and cleared the buildings and transmission was restored.

A case was registered on the complaint of Secretariat SHO Mehboob Ahmed who stated that the PTI and PAT protesters had stormed the government building after snatching weapons from the law enforcers.