Hasty CPLC shooting in the dark led to kidnapped neurologist’s death: Report

Investigator comes under pressure to alter angle of his findings.

Irfan Ali Bughio July 24, 2012


Neurologist Dr Aftab Qureshi was killed as a result of a hasty operation by the Citizens-Police Liaison Committee (CPLC) who went to rescue him from kidnappers in Hyderabad on May 13, concludes an initial report by DIG Crime Farhat Junejo.

The report has been submitted to the additional IG of Sindh.

According to police sources, the report disclosed that Qureshi was shot by a bullet from the weapon of Anti-Violent Crime Cell (AVCC) personnel ‘I’. According to the evidence and statements recorded, the CPLC and AVCC team attacked house No. 5 located in Abdullah Valley’s block A at 5:10 am. Dr Qureshi was being held hostage there. There was complete darkness in the house as suspect dacoit Akhtar Siyal had ordered his aides not to switch on the lights. The bullets hit Dr Qureshi by mistake because it was so dark.

The report said that four bullet casings were found in the room with Dr Qureshi’s body. Forensic examinations indicated that all of the bullets were fired by AVCC personnel. Twenty-eight other casings were found from other rooms, parts of the house and outside the house.

According to the report, Siyal was firing at the police with the help of a torch.

The report said that CPLC chief Ahmed Chinoy was also firing but his pistol fell during the fight. His pistol was later found in the corridor of the house.

The CPLC carried out an investigation of the house a day before the operation was conducted but it did not share its information with the AVCC, the report says. While talking to Sindh Express, Junejo claimed that he was under immense pressure to change the angle of the report. But he said that he would not yield. He said that according to the evidence and statements, he believed that Qureshi’s death was the result of a mistake by the CPLC.

A crime branch report says that Ashok Kumar, who was arrested during the operation, was also involved in the kidnapping. Mobile phone recordings helped lead investigators to a major actor in the kidnapping, Dr Dawood Ghishkori, who was constantly in touch with Kumar.

The report also claimed that Dr Qureshi’s servant Imdad Solangi was involved.

The investigation team recorded the statements of Chinoy, CPLC Additional Chief Najeeb Danewala, CPLC members Suresh Kumar and Malik Shabir, 18 AVCC personnel, two policemen from Bhittai Nagar police station, five policemen of Naseem Nagar police station, Suresh Kumar and his mother Kamla, Dr Qureshi’s servants Farooq Laghari, Azhar and Amjad Solangi and the accomplices, Irfan Jatt, Aziz Baricho and Hoat Banglani.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 25th, 2012.

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