SWABI - Around 103 leaders and members of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), who were previously apprehended during clashes with law enforcement across the district, were granted bail on Thursday. The protest was in response to the arrest of the party’s former chairman and previous prime minister, Imran Khan, on Monday. This occurred despite the district administration’s enforcement of Section 144, which prohibited gatherings of any nature for three months within the district.
PTI demonstrators, comprising both notable leaders and supporters, had assembled at Karnal Sher Khan Chowk. There, they encountered forceful police intervention, leading to several immediate arrests. Additionally, many were apprehended from various locations, including their residences, as part of the subsequent police crackdown. These detainees were presented before Judicial Magistrate Swabi-1, Khalil Khan, who subsequently released them on bail. Among the released figures was Major (r) Fida Hussain, the former district general secretary of the party.
Notably, former MPA Aqibullah, who is the brother of Asad Qaiser, as well as Rangaiz Khan, a former MPA , and Attaullah, the Tehsil Swabi mayor, secured anticipatory bail from the local court on Thursday.
Upon their release, the leaders and workers emphasized that engaging in protest demonstrations was a constitutional right, and they maintained the intention to exercise this right in the future. The PTI members who had been released were warmly welcomed at their residences by young party supporters, who vociferously denounced the arrest of the former prime minister and the imposed five-year ban. The blame for the situation was placed on the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), according to these PTI supporters.
Shahzada Fahad, the former president of Insaf Students Federation’s Peshawar region youth wing, asserted after his release that they had made significant sacrifices for the party’s cause.