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Karachi mayor among 21 indicted in May 12 mayhem case

KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court on Saturday indicted 21 accused, including Karachi Mayor Waseem Akhtar, in a case pertaining to the May 12, 2007 riots in the port city.

The ATC had taken up one of the four cases, (86/2007), related to the carnage that resulted in the killing of around 50 people and injuries to many more.

The judge read out charges against the suspects present in the courtroom. They pleaded not guilty and opted to contest the charges.

The court, hence, summoned prosecution witnesses for depositions on next hearing on October 27.

Earlier this week, the Sindh High Court ordered formation of a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) to probe the May 12 riots in Karachi.

On May 12, 2007, around 50 people were killed and over 100 wounded in attacks on rallies of different political parties and the legal fraternity, who had attempted to receive the then deposed chief justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry at Karachi airport ahead of a lawyers’ gathering.

Justice Chaudhry was forced to fly back to Islamabad after nine hours being restricted to the airport.

On that day, a major portion of Karachi’s main artery, Shahra-e-Faisal, had turned into a battlefield when rival political groups clashed with each other soon after the arrival of the then chief justice of Pakistan deposed by the military regime of Gen. Pervez Musharraf.

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