KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) censured the investigation officer (IO) of the murder case of a citizen, Ali Hussain, on Wednesday and directed the Anti-Violent Crime Cell (AVCC) SSP to change the IO of the case while hearing the plea, citing lack of confidence in the investigation.
The petitioner, the deceased’s mother, appeared before a two-member bench comprising Justice Muhammad Iqbal Kalhoro and Justice Abdul Mobin Lakho, with her counsel, advocate Muzammil Mumtaz Mayo.
Advocate Mayo stated before the court that IO Salim Rind was threatening him. “My son was killed by Gutka manufacturers. He was innocent and was killed for no reason. I have not been given justice yet. The perpetrators have the patronage of high ranking police officials,” said the petitioner. “You are my last hope, please give justice for my son,” she pleaded before the court.
Her lawyer maintained that Hussain was kidnapped by Gutka manufacturers on March 27, 2019, and his body was found on March 30 in the jurisdiction of Sharae Faisal Police Station. He said that the police took money from his client for her son’s post-mortem. “The officials protecting the Gutka mafia are black sheep in the police department,” he argued.
The bench lambasted the IO. “You haven’t investigated the case properly. You concealed facts and are saving the elements involved in the crime,” remarked the bench.
The court directed the AVCC SSP to change the IO of the case and adjourned the hearing till December 20.
Meanwhile, a two-member bench, headed by SHC Chief Justice Ahmed Ali Shaikh and comprising Justice Omar Sial, reserved the verdict on bail pleas filed by eight accused, including MQM leader Rauf Siddiqui, in the reference pertaining to illegal appointments in Sindh Small Industries.
The verdict couldn’t be given as the court’s time was nearing conclusion. The verdict will be given at the next hearing on December 3.
According to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), the accused made illegal appointments in Sindh Small Industries from 2008 to 2014. One of the accused, Sarwat Fahim, has acquired bail in the case.
The same bench clubbed the plea seeking the removal of Prisons Adviser Aijaz Ali Jakhrani’s name from the Exit Control List (ECL) along with his bail plea in the inquiry against him pertaining to assets beyond means.
The defence lawyer argued that Jakhrani wanted to go abroad for medical treatment. He prayed the court to remove Jakhrani’s name and cited the cases of Ayan Ali, General (Retd) Pervez Musharraf, and Shehbaz Sharif as precedent.
The NAB prosecutor maintained that the hearing of Jakhrani’s case, and the others accused, is fixed for December 12. He said that there were investigations underway against Jakhrani – one in Sukkur and another in Islamabad.
The court combined the two pleas filed by Jakhrani and adjourned the hearing.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 28th, 2019.