Slain minister: ATC issues warrants for Bhatti murder suspects

The two accused have escaped to Dubai, Interpol’s help to be sought.

Mudassir Raja August 30, 2011


Arrest warrants have been issued against two men suspected of being involved in the murder of former minorities’ minister Shahbaz Bhatti.

Anti-Terrorism Court Special Judge (ATC)-II Pervez Ali Shah issued the warrants against Malik Abid and Ziaur Rehman on Monday after Bhatti’s family named the two men as suspects in the murder.

Islamabad police officials said that they had come to know that the two men, said to be natives of Faisalabad, had escaped to Dubai. Interpol’s help will be sought to bring them back, they added.

So far, the police have failed to arrest any accused in connection with the murder, although earlier on June 19, suspect identified as Hafiz Nazar Muhammad was arrested on the basis of information provided by a minorities MPA from Sargodha. The ATC released the man on June 25 however, after police proved unable to provide any evidence against him.

Shahbaz Bhatti was murdered on March 2 in Islamabad’s I-8 sector. The attackers left a leaflet at the crime scene stating that they had killed the minister for his views on the blasphemy laws.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 30th,  2011.