LAHORE: A division bench of the Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday issued a notice to the federal government on a bail petition of the former Rawalpindi city police office Saud Aziz and the former superintendent of police Khurram Shehzad in the Benazir Bhutto murder case.
The bench, headed by Chief Justice Ijaz Ahmed Chaudhry, also summoned the record of the trial court in the case for the next date of hearing.
The next date of hearing will be fixed by the LHC office. Advocate Khawaja Sultan,arguing on behalf of the accusedmen, said that the police officers had met their duty and provided security for the former prime minister. They had devised a comprehensive security plan, he said, and informed Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leaders about it.
He added that PPP workers were giving security cover to Bhutto’s vehicle. Sultan said that if the death of Bhutto was attributed to failure on the part of his clients then all police officers deputed at spots where terrorist activity took place should be held liable for the consequences of the successful attacks.
On December 22, 2010, Aziz and Shehzad were arrested after a Rawalpindi court cancelled their bail. The two men had filed an application beforethe LHC requesting that their bail matter be transferred from the Rawalpindi bench to Lahore.
Their transfer application was accepted. In their bail application, the men had submitted that theyhad no role in the case. They said that they had been implicated in the case only to delay the investigation and possibly to protect the actual culprits.
The Rawalpindi court while deny them bail had observed that they had failed to protectthe former prime minister. Ithad added that it was their duty to arrange her post mortem examination, which had not been carried out. The court had rejected as evidence an audio tape in which President Zardari apparently asked that post mortem not be carried out.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 22nd, 2011.
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