October 13th, 2021
By Staff Reporter
A two-member division bench of the Lahore High Court will decide matter of release of Saad Hussain Rizvi, chief of the banned Tehreek-e-Lubaik Pakistan (TLP), according to the directions of the Supreme Court while hearing the Punjab government’s petition against the high court’s 1st October order to release him.
Hearing the Punjab government’s petition at the Lahore registry on Tuesday, the apex court remanded the matter of Rizvi’s release to the Lahore High Court, directing that a special division bench hear the case. The hearing was conducted by Justice Ijazul Ahsan and Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi.
The Punjab government’s counsel sought annulment of the release order and argued that 12 people, including three policemen, had lost their lives as a result of the protests and rioting on Saad Rizvi’s call. Rizvi was detained under the Anti-Terrorism Act and the High Court’s review board was approached to extend his detention, but the High Court’s review board rejected the request for extension.
Justice Mazahir Ali Akbar Naqvi inquired whether any gazette notification of detention under anti-terrorism provisions was also issued. In response, the public prosecutor said that the provincial government had issued a gazette notification of detention.
Advocate Burhan Moazzam Malik, counsel for Saad Rizvi’s uncle, who had challenged his nephew’s detention in the LHC, opposed the provincial government’s request. The counsel argued that the government did not have the power to extend detention after 90 days.
Justice Mazahir Ali Akbar Naqvi said that the opposing party did not deny the violent incidents which took place in the past and believed that it had happened. The case has not been properly dealt with by both parties, the judge remarked.
Malik argued that Saad Rizvi had nothing to do with the riots because he had been detained earlier and that Saad Rizvi was in custody when the riots broke out. He said that Saad Rizvi had been in jail for six months without any reason. The court, after hearing the arguments of the parties, referred the matter of release to the high court for decision.
Saad Rizvi was arrested ahead of a long march announced by the TLP on April 12. Following the riots and protests, the government banned the TLP.