KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Karachi has re-issued arrest warrants for twenty Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) leaders including Altaf Hussain, Farooq Sattar, Waseem Akhtar, Nasreen Jalil, Khush Bakht Shujaat, Rashid Godil, Khawaja Izhar, Qamar Mansoor, Salman Baloch and Rauf Siddique for listening and delivering a speech against the military establishment and national integrity.
The MQM leaders and 200 unknown party workers were named in 23 FIRs in which the complainants alleged that the accused had attended a public gathering and facilitated the MQM chief in his speech against the security agencies on July 12 this year.
Altaf Hussain had accused the paramilitary Rangers of torturing and killing his party workers in ongoing targeted operation against criminals in the city.
In today’s proceeding, the police told court that raids were conducted in different areas of the city to nab the accused however no arrest was made.
Meanwhile, the court re-issued non-bailable arrest warrants for all the accused and directed the police to present them on January 15.
Altaf Hussain has been living in self-imposed exile in Britain since 1992 military crackdown in Karachi and obtained British citizenship a decade later.
From his base in London, he has been a towering figure within the party, addressing massive street rallies attended by tens of thousands in Karachi through a loudspeaker connected to a telephone.
Recently, several cases were registered against him at different police stations under terrorism laws over a speech criticising the military establishment.