KARACHI - An anti-terrorism courts (ATC) on Tuesday granted bail to four Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan activists in two cases pertaining to the alleged hate speeches of the MQM founder and media houses attack cases. The court directed to deposit their surety amount to the dams fund.

ATC conducted hearing of bail applications filed by four MQM workers including Syed Arshad Ali, Hassan Alam, Muhammad Jahangir and Sharf Alam.

The court allowed their pleas after hearing final arguments from both the sides.

The court granted their bail against a surety bond of Rs5,000 each and directed to deposit the surety amount to the dams fund. 

The four accused have been being tried along with MQM leaders Dr Farooq Sattar, Amir Khan, Kanwer Naveed Jamil, Qamar Mansoor, Shahid Pasha and others in cases pertaining to charges of entertaining the anti-state speech of MQM founder Altaf Hussain, and ransacking some media houses on August 22, 2016.

Earlier, the prosecution had opposed their applications and pleaded the court to refuse their bail pleas, added that they were allegedly involvement in the August 22, 2016 provocative speech and media houses attack cases. However, the applicants’ counsels denied the allegations by stating that the prosecution had failed to produce any evidence to prove the involvement on their clients in the offenses. 

Previously, during the court’s hearing, the accused were found absent, the court wanted to indict the suspects on the hearing, however, upon finding that they were not present, it postponed the indictment till November 3 and passed orders to cancel their bail.

The court has already declared Altaf Hussain, Haider Abbas Rizvi, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, and Salman Mujahid as proclaimed offenders.

As many as 50 MQM leaders and workers including Shahid Pasha, Kanwar Naveed Jameel, and workers Abdur Rehman, Sabih-ud-din, Raza Hasan, Adnan, Muhammad Nasir, Muhammad Faisal, Nadeem, Zulfiqar, Niaz, Muhammad Amir, Syed Arshad Ali, Abdur Rehman, Muhammad Saleem, Irfan, Ghualm Nabi, Munir Ahmed and Muhammad Asif-had been arrested in the case.

According to the prosecution, the MQM fonder had delivered hate speech against national security agencies and forced his workers to raise anti-Pakistan slogans.

The enraged party workers, who were on hunger strike unto death, attacked the office of a private news channel located in a building at Sadar after their chief addressed them and incited for the offence.

MQM founder, senior leaders Haider Abbas Rizvi, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Salman Mujahid and others were absconding. The above mentioned absconding suspects have disappeared from the scenario to avoid their arrest; however, the police had submitted in the court that they had been trying to nab them.