Police went ‘out of their way’ to charge Ayesha Malik

LHC confirms bail, says case will be decided on merit.


Express October 14, 2011

LAHORE:


A Lahore High Court division bench confirmed the interim bail given to Ayesha Malik, daughter of PML-Q leader Malik Ahad, on Thursday after reading an inquiry report that concluded that police officials had gone out of their way to register a kidnapping for ransom charge against her.


Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Mubasharullah’s inquiry report noted that the police had added Section 365A (kidnapping for ransom) to the other charges against Ayesha Malik six days after registering the first information report (FIR), even though the ‘hostage’ had been ‘recovered’ five days earlier. The police registered a case under Section 365 (abduction) against Malik on September 26, but added Section 365A on October 2.

The DIG said that Defence A Station House Officer Attique Dogar and Investigation In-charge Zulfiqar Cheema had been suspended and he had recommended departmental action against them.

The counsel for the complainant, a Philippine woman identified in the FIR as Lory Vie P Docog, insisted that Malik was a dangerous woman who had beaten up her maid. According to the FIR, Malik had trespassed on their property and kidnapped her son Jospeh.

The counsel said that Malik’s father had published an advertisement in the newspaper stating that she had drawn up a false letter of attorney so she could sell his property. He said that his client was receiving threats from her.

At this, Chief Justice Ijaz Ahmad Chaudhry asked the lawyer how his client had found out so much about the accused if she spoke no Urdu.

The counsel for the complainant said the FIR was registered because otherwise a thousand Philippine maids working in Pakistani would take to the streets in protest. He said the accused was trying to bring politics into the case.

The chief justice said that the case would be decided on merit and politics should be kept out of the court. He said that if there was evidence against the accused, he would cancel her bail.

The bench, which included Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed, also directed the inspector general of Punjab Police to act as per the law on Ayesha’s request for police protection as she was receiving death threats.

The chief justice had, at the last hearing on October 7, cancelled an anti-terrorism court’s order that Malik be remanded in police custody for 10 days and granted her interim bail. He also ordered an inquiry against the judge, who was transferred last Friday. Malik says that the case against her is politically motivated, as MNA Hamza Shahbaz, son of Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, was afraid that she would reveal their secret marriage.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 14th, 2011. 

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