Imaan Mazari wasn’t granted bail in sedition charges on 22 August
Claim: The following claims surfaced on social media after lawyer and human rights activist Imaan Mazari was arrested:
- Imaan Mazari received post-arrest bail in the sedition case on 22 August.
- The anti-terrorism court granted her bail on 22 August.
- She was released after securing bail.
Fact: These claims are misleading
- Imaan Mazari was granted post-arrest bail in other charges, not in the sedition case on 22 August.
- The post-arrest bail for one FIR was granted by a district and sessions court in Islamabad.
- She was not released after getting post-arrest bail in the Tarnol case on 22 August. At that time, Mazari was under police custody in the second case registered in the anti-terrorism court. Mazari is still in custody for a third case, at the time of publishing.
Fact or Fiction?
On 18 August 2023, lawyer and human rights activist Imaan Zainab Mazari-Hazir addressed a public rally organised by the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM) in Islamabad. Videos circulating on social media showed Mazari criticising the military establishment over enforced disappearances. After the rally, two cases were registered against Mazari and the leaders of PTM.
On 19 August, the first FIR was registered at Tarnol Police Station under multiple sections in the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC), namely Section 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 341 (punishment for wrongful restraint), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 395 (punishment for dacoity), 440 (mischief committed after preparation made for causing death or hurt) and 506 ii (criminal intimidation).
The second FIR was registered at the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) under the following PPC sections: 124A (sedition), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object), 153 (inciting to riot), 153A (promotion of enmity between groups) and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation). Sections 7 (punishment for acts of terrorism) and 11 (power to order forfeiture) of the Anti-Terrorism Act were also included in this FIR.
Mazari was presented in front of the judicial magistrate on 20 August 2023 after she was arrested from her house in the early hours. At that time, the magistrate turned down the request for physical remand and approved only a one-day judicial remand. The judicial magistrate also said that for other charges, Imaan Mazari and Ali Wazir should be presented in front of the anti-terrorism court.
The next day, on 21 August, the anti-terrorism court granted the police three days of physical remand of Mazari for the CTD case.
Mazari was, however, granted post-arrest bail in the Tarnol case by the judicial magistrate on 22 August, which created misinformation on social media.
Some digital media outlets reported that she was granted bail in the sedition case, while others claimed that the anti-terrorism court ordered her bail. At the same time, misreporting claimed Imaan Mazari got bail, which created confusion as many thought she was released.
Soch Fact Check received a copy of the bail order stating that Mazari received post-arrest bail in the case registered at Tarnol police station. At that time, she has not received bail for the “sedition charges” as they are registered with the CTD.
Lawyer Usama Khilji also tweeted on X (formerly Twitter), clearing the misinformation surrounding Mazari’s case. His post reads, “A lot of misinfo around @ImaanZHazir’s case, so clarification: Magistrate court granted bail yesterday in dacoity & NOC case re jalsa, but she’s under physical remand in an Anti-terrorism case (!!) with CTD, & hearing is tomorrow at Islamabad Anti Terror Court.”
Mazari was presented in the anti-terrorism court after her physical remand ended on 24 August. According to Mazari’s counsel, Barrister Ahsan Pirzada, she is on judicial remand and has not yet been released by the court.
As per the latest reports, Imaan Mazari and Ali Wazir were both granted bail in the anti-terrorism charges on 28 August. However, Mazari was again arrested in another case outside Adiala Jail. The recent case lodged at Bara Kahu includes charges of terror financing in which the anti-terrorism court granted a 3-day physical remand of Mazari on 29 August.
Conclusion: Imaan Mazari was not granted bail on 22 August in the anti-terrorism case registered against her at CTD. The judicial magistrate approved her bail in another case related to damaging state property during a public rally in Islamabad.
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