ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court on Thursday set aside anti-terrorism court (ATC)’s directives to remove terrorism charges and transfer Barrister Fahad Malik murder case to a district and sessions court.
A two-member bench comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani began hearing a petition filed by the victim’s brother Jawad Sohrab Malik, through his counsel Khawaja Naveed and Zain Qureshi, challenging ATC decision to drop terrorism clauses and transfer of the case to a lower court.
Setting aside the ATC judgment, IHC restored section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act in the murder case and transferred it back to an ATC.
In December 2017, ATC-I Judge Kausar Abbas Zaidi had accepted a plea from the suspects in the murder case for removing terrorism clauses from the FIR and sending the case to the sessions court for further trial. Ruling that the offence did not fall within the ambit of the Anti-Terrorism Act, the ATC had subsequently transferred the case to the sessions court.
The Shalimar police had booked Arshad Mehmood, Noman Khokhar and at least eight other people after Malik was gunned down near Shalimar Police Station in F-10/3 in the early hours of August 15, 2017. Tariq Ayub, Malik’s uncle, was also injured in the attack.
Three counsels for the suspects – Mehmood, Khokhar and Hashim Khan – had questioned the jurisdiction of the court, saying no fear and insecurity spread in the society because of the murder. They had alleged that the complainant used their influence to have ATA Section 7 inserted in the case.