ATC hears Wasim Akhtar’s bail plea in May 12 case

KARACHI: Anti-terrorism court (ATC) heard the bail plea of imprisoned Karachi mayor and MQM leader Wasim Akhtar in the May 12 incident on Thursday.


Wasim Akhtar said that fake cases were being filed against him. The court asked him about his whereabouts and position at the time of the May 12 tragedy, to which the Karachi mayor replied he was advisor to the chief minister and was at the Governor’s House when the incident took place. Asked about the timing of the incident, Wasim Akhtar said it took place at 12:30pm.

Wasim Akhtar’s lawyer Advocate Khawaja Naveed argued in the hearing that SSP Malir Rao Anwar registered 27 forged cases against his client overnight when Wasim Akhtar was elected as the mayor of Karachi. He added that MQM Pakistan chief Farooq Sattar and Khushbakht Shujaat, in contrast, were provided with security.

The lawyer further argued that the police detained his client without the court’s permission and named him in six cases pertaining to the May 12 incident.

The court said that Waseem Akhtar’s name was not present in the FIR but that it would look into the facts to make any decision.

Akhtar has said repeatedly in the past that he should be granted bail in the interest of Karachi.

“If you think I have done something wrong, I should be granted opportunity for bail. I have appealed to both Chief Justice of Pakistan and Chief Justice Sindh High Court,” he told Geo News at ATC last month, where he appeared in connection with charges pertaining to the May 12 carnage.

Akhtar was arrested on July 19 on suspicion of sheltering and providing medical treatment to alleged militants and criminals. He also faces earlier charges of inciting riots. He was elected as the mayor of Karachi on August 24.