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Manzoor Pashteen handed over to D.I Khan Police, Balochistan information minister

Quetta, 6 December, 2023 (GNP): Balochistan’s Caretaker Minister for Information, Jan Achakzai, confirmed in a press conference that Manzoor Pashteen, leader of Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement’s (PTM) has been handed over to the Dera Ismail Khan police by the provincial government.

Manzoor Pashteen, who was arrested in Chaman a day earlier. The arrest followed a dispute over the alleged firing involving Pashteen’s party and local police in the Gudhamo area.

Chaman’s Deputy Commissioner Raja Athar Abbas stated that the PTM chief was detained in connection with the reported firing and a ban on Pashteen’s entry into Balochistan.

Contradicting the PTM’s claims of police firing at Pashteen’s vehicle, Minister Achakzai asserted that the arrest resulted from Pashteen’s bodyguard allegedly opening fire near the Chaman Press Club, leading to injuries to a woman and a child.

Amid mounting tensions, Achakzai highlighted demands from Balochistan’s youth and civil society to ban PTM. He added, “through social media and other sources, people are declaring the PTM a terrorist organisation”.

Minister also told that Balochistan government is considering imposing a ban on the PTM party in the province. This is because of Pashteen’s entry in to the province despite restrictions being imposed on him and his participation in protests in Chaman.

Also Read: Manzoor Pashteen arrested in Chaman

Last week, Pashteen had declared joining protests over the alleged extrajudicial killing of Balaach Mola Bakhsh in Turbat.

The protests ensued following CTD’s assertion of Balaach Mola Bakhsh’s killing, along with three others, in an alleged encounter on November 24.

Achakzai had previously labeled PTM as an “anti-Pakistan organization.” Meanwhile, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) expressed concern over Pashteen’s arrest, denouncing the continuous harassment of PTM leaders and supporters.

HRCP demanded an impartial inquiry into Pashteen’s arrest, asserting PTM’s exercise of their right to peaceful assembly and expression. The commission urged fair consideration of their grievances by the state.