Protest on Monday if Nankana lawyers not released
By Abid Butt
LAHORE: The Lahore High Court Bar Association (LHCBA) plans to launch a protest drive against the arrest of Nankana Bar Association’s lawyers if they are not released by October 11.
Lawyers claim that Nankana Bar President Rana Ali Asghar and others were implicated in sedition and theft cases at the behest of Ijaz Shah, director general of the Intelligence Bureau.
LHCBA President Ahmed Awais told reporters on Friday that the IB director had implicated their colleagues in a sedition case to satisfy his ego as the booked lawyers had removed the director’s nameplate from the Nankana bar building. He said Mr Shah, former Punjab home secretary, was annoyed over the removal of the plaque, which was put up after Mr Shah promised a Rs 1 million donation for the bar at a ceremony. When Mr Shah failed to give the donation, the bar got the funds from a union council nazim to complete its building and put up a nameplate of the Sheikhupura district nazim.
Mr Awais said that when the lawyers got bail in the sedition case, the IB director influenced the local police to book them for attack on the Nankana Sahib gurdwara.
The lawyers moved the court for bail on October 4 and the court fixed October 8 for the preliminary hearing. He said the hearing would be delayed for the next two days as the court remained closed on Saturday and Sunday. He warned that if the Nankana bar members were not released by Monday, the LHCBA members would meet the same day to plan a protest.
Meanwhile, the Punjab Bar Council vice chairman, Tanvirur Rahman Randhawa, has announced that lawyers will observe a “black day” to protest the arrests on October 13. The LHCBA vice president, Zulfiqar Bokhari, finance secretary, Sarfraz Ali Khan, and many other lawyers were present at the press conference.