KARACHI: Police investigators submitted on Monday an interim charge-sheet before the administrative judge of the anti-terrorism courts against 14 jail officials and others in a case pertaining to the escape of two under-trial prisoners.
The investigation report said that two accomplices of the under-trial prisoners had helped them escape from the Judicial Complex within Central Jail, Karachi. The accomplices, along with four others, facilitated the under-trial prisoners’ travel to Haripur and provided them accommodation.
The then superintendent of the central prison, Ghulam Murtaza Shaikh, deputy superintendent Faheem Anwar Memon, assistant superintendents Abdul Rehman Shaikh, Naveed Ahmed Khan, Salik Ayaz along with nine other officials and personnel have been booked for their alleged negligence in the June 13 escape of the two militants, Shaikh Mohammad Mumtaz alias Firoun alias Sher Khan and Mohammad Ahmed Khan alias Munna, said to be associated with the banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ).
The investigating officer had charge-sheeted the five senior jail officials along with ASI Faroosh, head clerk Rafiq Ahmed Channa and constables Nawab Ali, Nadir Hussain, Mohammad Takeel, Abdul Ghafoor, Saeed Ahmed, Atta Mohammad and Mohammad Sajjad for their alleged negligence.
The IO has shown Azharuddin, Zubair Ayub, Balawal Hussain and Sher Bano as absconders in the interim investigation report, while constable Mohammad Amir Hussain and private suspect Mohammad Asif have not been charge sheeted due to lack of evidence.
According to the interim report, Azhar and Zubair were present along with both the UTPs in the courtroom inside the prison and they helped the militants flee by removing a grill at the court.
Thereafter, both suspects, along with other absconders, had facilitated the escaped prisoners’ to reach Haripur, where Balawal provided them shelter, it added.
It further contended in the report that the involvement of the absconders has been found through the call data records and statements of witnesses, including prisoners who were brought to the court along with both suspected militants on the day of incident. Mohammad Shafiq, father of Balawal, also informed the investigators that his son had provided the prisoners shelter at his house in Haripur.
It maintained in the interim charge-sheet that the jail officials and personnel were found involved due to their negligence and carelessness.
The IO has listed 17 prosecution witnesses in the interim investigation report. The administrative judge accepted the charge sheet and sent the case to ATC-VIII for trial.
According to the prosecution, the under-trial prisoners had escaped from the Judicial Complex inside the central prison, where they were brought in connection with the hearing of some cases. Both the suspected militants were arrested in 2013 and were allegedly involved in several cases of targeted killing and belonged to the Qasim Rasheed group linked with the Naeem Bukhari-led LeJ.
A case was lodged against the jail officials for their alleged negligence and the escaped prisoners under sections 223 (escape from confinement or custody negligently suffered by public servant), 224 (resistance or obstruction by a person to his lawful apprehension) 225 (resistance or obstruction to lawful apprehension of another person), 225-A (omission to apprehend, or sufferance of escape, on part of public servant in cases not otherwise provided for) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code at the New Town police station. Later, the Counter Terrorism Department, which is investigating the case, added Section 7 of Anti-Terrorism Act in the FIR.