LAHORE: The firing incident on the premises of Lahore session court on Wednesday, which claimed two lives, including that of a head constable, has raised several questions over security arrangements in the red zone areas of the city.
During the firing incident, a murder suspect named Malik Amjad Gujjar died on the spot, while head constable Muhammad Asif succumbed to his injuries on the way to hospital. The suspect's accomplice, Ahsan, was also injured.
According to the witnesses, two unidentified men opened indiscriminate fire at the accused when he was leaving the court after the hearing. The suspect died on the spot.
"His body kept lying on the ground at the crime scene for at least half-an-hour due to the chaotic situation," said a witness.
When contacted, SHO Dais Gujjar at the Islampura police station said no FIR had been registered as yet. "Police were helpless due to the shortage of personnel at the sessions court."
He confirmed with The Express Tribune that a group from Gawalmandi area tried to help their accomplice Amjad flee. The accused had come to attend the court hearing. "The shoot-out took place when the rival group also opened fire. As a result, the accused and Asif were killed.
When asked about the security lapse in the vicinity of the session court, the SHO immediately switched off his phone.
A lawyer, on the condition of anonymity, told The Express Tribune that at least 50 police officials were deployed at the sessions court. “There is a walkthrough gate too,” he said, adding police personnel in plainclothes were also on duty when the firing incident took place.
"It is a very unusual that people gained access to the premises of the session court. It seems some police officials were also involved in the incident."
Published in The Express Tribune, February 1st, 2018.
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