KARACHI; Dec 8, 2018 — Mayor Karachi Waseem Akhtar and 21 others were indicted by an anti-terrorism court (ATC) here on Saturday pertaining to the May 12, 2007 riots, 11 years after the incident.
The indictments relate to May 12, 2007 tragedy in which over fifty people were killed and more than a hundred injured in attacks on rallies by different political parties and lawyers who had attempted to receive the then deposed chief justice, Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, at Jinnah International Airport in the metropolis.
Chaudhry was forced to fly back to Islamabad after nine hours of being restricted to the airport.
Akhtar was the provincial home adviser to the chief minister at the time.
The ATC was hearing four cases related to the 11-year-old gory incident. The court indicted 22 suspects including the mayor in two cases, which all of them denied.
The ATC summoned the witnesses in the next hearing of the case.
On May 12, a major portion of Karachi’s main artery, Shahra-e-Faisal, turned into a battlefield as rival political groups clashed with each other soon after the arrival of the then chief justice. Due to clashes, the former chief justice did not move ahead from the lounge of the airport and after 9 hours waiting returned to Islamabad without addressing a lawyers’ convention at Sindh High Court.
The extraordinary violence unleashed that day after law enforcement was virtually suspended set a new low for the city considered the powerhouse of country’s economy.
The Karachi mayor and at least 18 others are out on bail.