Ahead of anti-govt rally, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police raid opposition leader Mufti Kifayatullah's residence, arrest 4 family members

ANI
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Khyber Pakhtunkhwa [Pakistan], January 3 (ANI): In an attempt to muzzle voices of the Opposition ahead of Bahawalpur rally, the police here raided the residence of Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) leader Mufti Kifayatullah in the Tarangri Sabir Shah area to arrest him on the charges of maligning the army but instead apprehended his four family members, including two sons.

The official sources said police had booked Mufti Kifayatullah, a former provincial lawmaker of the JUI-F headed by Maulana Fazlur Rehman, under Section 6 of the Constitution on treason charges after receiving an official letter from the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Home Department, The News International reported. The raid was conducted on Saturday evening.

The raid was related to the case that was registered against Kifayatullah for "speaking against" the Pakistan Army during a TV talk show.

He had said that the Army "generals too should be held accountable for their theft".

The police arrested Mufti Kifaytullah's two sons, Shabbir Kifayat and Hassan Kifayat, his elder brother, Qazi Habibur Rehman, and brother-in-law, Qari Abdul Manan. Those arrested were shifted to the Baffa Police Station.

"We have been kept under illegal confinement since early morning as the police did not tell us what our crime was," Qazi Habibur Rehman told reporters.

A group of JUI-F leaders and workers gathered at the Baffa Police Station after the police raid on the residence of Mufti Kifaytullah.

The police arrested Mufti Kifaytullah's two sons, Shabbir Kifayat and Hassan Kifayat, his elder brother, Qazi Habibur Rehman, and brother-in-law, Qari Abdul Manan. Those arrested were shifted to the Baffa Police Station.

"We have been kept under illegal confinement since early morning as the police did not tell us what our crime was," Qazi Habibur Rehman told reporters.

A group of JUI-F leaders and workers gathered at the Baffa Police Station after the police raid on the residence of Mufti Kifaytullah.

The Pakistan government under Prime Minister Imran Khan, in the past few weeks, has taken actions against several opposition leaders amid rising protests against it and the Army.

The opposition parties under the banner of Pakistan Democratic alliance have carried out several rallies against Prime Minister Imran Khan.

The recent raid comes as the Chief of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) Maulana Fazlur Rehman is scheduled to lead a political rally in Bahawalpur in Punjab province.

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz Vice President Maryam Nawaz and former prime minister and Pakistan Peoples' Party leader Yousuf Raza Gilani will also attend today's rally.

The rally will pass through Bandra Bridge, Model Town C Chowk, Fateh Chowk, Model Town B, and reach Toll Plaza Sutlej Bridge and it is expected that all three -- Fazlur Rehman, Maryam Nawaz and Yousuf Raza Gilani -- will address the rally at Chowk Seraiki.

The PDM, an alliance of 11 Opposition parties, has been formed against the army's interference in politics and installing "puppet" Khan through a manipulated election.

Khan faces a serious challenge as the PDM set a January 31 deadline for him to step down or face a "Long March" to Islamabad.

The PDM has held massive rallies in major cities to seek Khan's ouster and press the powerful military to stop interfering in politics. (ANI)