SC grants bail to MNA Ali Wazir in hate speech case

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ISLAMABAD – The Supreme Court of Pakistan Tuesday granted bail to MNA Ali Wazir, a leader of the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM), in a case pertaining to the alleged use of provocative language against state institutions.

A three-judge bench, headed by Justice Sardar Tariq Masood and comprising Justice Jamal Mandokhail and Justice Aminuddin Khan, issued the ruling on an appeal filed by Wazir against the Sindh High Court’s (SHC) verdict earlier this year that had rejected his bail application.

The Waziristan lawmaker has been ordered to deposit surety bonds worth Rs400,000.

The apex court observed that the other accused in the case had been granted bail, adding that Wazir should also be released on bail.

Ali Wazir, however, may not be released immediately as he is nominated in some other cases in which he is yet to get bail.

Peshawar Police had arrested Mohammad Ali, better known as Ali Wazir, and others in December 2020 on the request of Sindh Police for allegedly using defamatory and provocative language against state institutions and the army during a rally in Sohrab Goth.

Earlier this month, an anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Karachi indicted MNA Ali Wazir and 10 others in the sedition case.

The judge of ATC-XII framed charges against Ali and other accused, namely Noorullah Tareen, Baseerullah, Ahsanullah, Sher Ayoub Khan, Muhammad Sher Khan, Javed Raheem, Muhammad Tahir alias Qazi Tahir, Ibrahim Khan, Naimatullah alias Adil Shah and Muhammad Sarwar.

The court had +++++++++++++++framed charges against the accused under sections 120-B (punishment for criminal conspir-acy), 121 (waging or attempting to wage war or abetting the waging of war against Pakistan), 121-A (conspiracy to commit offences punishable under section 121), 124-A (sedition), 153 (wantonly provocating with the intent to cause riot), 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups), 505 (statements conducing to public mischief), 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation), 188 ( disobedience to an order duly promulgated by a public servant), and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of a common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code and section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.

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