August 22, 2023
Two members of the Ahmadi community who were nominated in an FIR in July and who had been in hiding since then, were meant to appear in court on Tuesday, August 22 for their bail acceptance hearing, but sources within the community told Voicepk.net that pressure and intimidation by some elements from the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) had put so much fear into them that they did not make an appearance.
The accused are a small-scale business owner Mubashir and his son Musharaf who were nominated in FIR no. 1783 registered on July 31, in the Badami Bagh police station, under Section 298-C for posing as Muslims and preaching religion.
On August 15, the two had applied for bail before arrest from the Session Court Lahore whose decision was to be given on Tuesday, August 22.
Apart from the two main accused, six others were also nominated including relatives of Mubashir namely Wajahat Ahmad Qamar, Shafique Adil, Nasir Ahmad and his son Mudassir Ahmad and two other Ahmadis namely Shiraz Ahmad and Umer Ahmad Bajwah. These were arrested and sent in judicial remand.
After the father and son were nominated in the FIR on July 31, they closed down their factory and hid themselves, avoiding arrest.
A close acquaintance of the family said that Mubashir was running a modest operation – a small-scale shoe unit – from the Badami Bagh area, with not more than 20 to 25 workers.
“They had been living here and there, almost homeless, taking their families along,” said an acquaintance of the family while speaking to Voicepk.
On Friday, August 18, some relatives of Mubashir and others all went to the factory to collect some important documents and things when it was discovered that some locals had gathered outside. To protect themselves they called the police so that no mob violence would occur.
Can you imagine ! TLP extremists chased the arrested 6 Ahmadis who called police for help but instead apprehended. Alike terrorists,
police put clothes on their faces & then covered their heads with Plastic Bags. In this Banana Republic this is what happened in the court premises pic.twitter.com/2QVEEbeuGA
— Arshad Yousafzai (@Arshadyousafzay) August 21, 2023
دو اگست کو لاہور میں واقع ایک فیکٹری کے مالک اور بیٹے کے خلاف 288 سی کے تحت تحریک لبیک نےFIRکٹوائی کی یہ فیکٹری کی آڑ میں احمدیت کی تبلیغ کرتے ہیں۔انہوں نے ضمانت قبل از گرفتاری کروا لی۔ کل شب ان کےعزیز6 افراد لفیکٹری سے سامان لینے گئے تو تحریک لبیک نے انہیں گھیرے میں لے لیا۔
— Sabookh Syed | سبوخ سید (@SaboohSyed) August 19, 2023
When the police came they assured the father and son that they were taking them for ‘protection’.
“I would say this is the destruction of six different families, not just individuals,” said the acquaintance.
When the police came arrived and took eight Ahmadis into custody from the spot and shifted them to the undisclosed location, the sources said, adding that a delegation of the community later met the police high-ups and complained to them about the local police’s excessive action.
A statement by the Inspector General of Police was released by Dawn on Monday saying, that the ‘factory was not stormed by the TLP’, but the Ahmadi spokesperson while speaking to Voicepk insisted that it was a mix of locals and TLP elements.
“TLP actually raised slogans, they released a poster, and right after the court time ended, and the custody failed to come in fear of being attacked, they posted a picture of victory,” said Amir Mehmood.
Meanwhile, no one from the community knows – or has dared to know anything about the fate of the other six who are in judicial remand because they are scared to get in touch.
“We cannot meet them openly because then we will target ourselves,” says S, an acquaintance.