The Islamabad High Court on Monday ordered a Lal Masjid khadim, Manzoor Hussain, removed from the Fourth Schedule of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA).
The Fourth Schedule is a section of the ATA under which suspected terrorist are kept under observation. It is mandatory for a Fourth Scheduler to register their attendance with the local police on a regular basis.
Punjab Counter-terrorism Department (CTD) had submitted a report to the district police officer in Attock, accusing Hussain of meeting members of the banned Ahl-e-Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ), formerly Sipah-e-Sahaba, at his residence in Attock. Hussain was placed on the list by the Punjab Home Department in February 2016.
The high court had summoned officials of the Home Department and Punjab CTD to present their evidence in the case. Justice Shaukat Aziz headed the bench.
The respondents, however, failed to provide proof, including the names of the people they had accused Hussain of meeting.
The court ruled in Hussain’s favour citing insufficient evidence, directing authorities to remove him from the fourth schedule. It further ordered his bank account be unfrozen and his computerised national identity card be restored.