Shahzeb Khan murder case: Shahrukh’s plea for transfer of case dismissed

Published: April 25, 2013
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Shahzeb Khan. PHOTO: FILE

Shahzeb Khan. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) dismissed a plea on Wednesday filed by Shahrukh Jatoi, the prime suspect in the Shahzeb Khan murder case, to transfer the trial proceedings from the special Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) to the ordinary court.

As ATC-III is conducting the trial on a daily basis, the main suspect filed a criminal revision application with the SHC. He submitted that since the case did not fall within the ambit of the anti-terrorism law, his lawyer had challenged the jurisdiction of the ATC to conduct the trial.

Earlier, the trial court had also dismissed the suspect’s similar plea, observing that sufficient evidence was available on record to prove that the case falls within the ambit of the law. “Every criminal act cannot be covered under the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997,” the suspect’s lawyer had argued in the review plea. “Every terrorist may be criminal, but every criminal cannot be given the label of a ‘terrorist’ only to set in motion the more stringent provisions of the special law.”

Initially, the Darakhshan police had registered a murder case on the complaint of the victim’s father, DSP Aurangzeb Khan, who had named the four men as murderers. After the Supreme Court took notice, the investigator also added section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997 among other charges to the FIR. The suspect’s lawyer has also challenged inclusion of section 7 and asked the SHC to declare that the offence does not attract the provisions of the stringent anti-terrorism law.

A plea against a plea

The family of the victim had also joined the proceedings through an intervener plea.

Their lawyer opposed the plea, saying the ATC was rightly trying the suspects. The lawyer pointed out that the suspect’s similar plea was also dismissed by the ATC Judge, who found the special court had jurisdiction to hear and decide the case.

Headed by Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, the bench after hearing arguments from both sides, dismissed the plea.

Case adjourned

The ATC adjourned the hearing of the murder case on an application moved by defence counsel on Wednesday.

The counsel, Shaukat Zubaidi, requested the court to adjourn the hearing as ‘he was not feeling well’, said the in-charge deputy district public prosecutor for the state, Abdul Maroof.

“The law and order situation was not good today due to a strike called by a political party,” stated the counsel in the application moved before the court. Zubaidi, a resident of North Nazimabad, requested the court to adjourn the case for a day as he was unable to attend proceedings on Wednesday.

The prison officials produced all the suspects in the court. The investigating officer, Mubeen Ahmed, who was supposed to be cross-examined by the defence counsel, was present in court but the hearing was adjourned. Justice Ghulam Mustafa Memon of the ATC-III gave a ‘last chance’ to the defence counsel while directing Ahmed to appear before the court on Thursday.

December / January

Dec 27th

Shahrukh Jatoi escapes to Dubai

5th

IG police says ‘red warrant’ issued for prime suspect, Shahrukh Jatoi’s arrest

7th

Siraj Talpur, Sajjad Talpur, Murtaza Lashari, remanded to police custody

8th

Police officer leaves for Dubai to arrest prime suspect. Dubai police deny having traced him yet.

8th

SHC restrains police from confiscating the property of suspect’s brother, Shahzad Ali Jatoi

10th

Eyewitnesses identify suspects

18th

Shahrukh Jatoi sent to lock-up. Ossification test ordered

19th

Witnesses identify prime suspect, Shahrukh Jatoi

22nd

Prime suspect undergoes ossification test

26th

ATC considers Shahrukh Jatoi to be underage and sends him to juvenile jail on judicial remand till Jan 29

30th

Shahrukh Jatoi sent to Central Jail. Fresh ossification test ordered

February

7th

ATC directs Aitchison College to provide documents to verify Shahrukh Jatoi’s age

9th

SHC restrains FIA from arresting an airport agent of the Emirates Airlines

14th

FIA files interim charge sheet against Shahrukh Jatoi for using fraudulent means to escape the country

19th

Police file charge sheet before ATC

20th

Judicial magistrate issues show-cause notice to FIA investigator for not submitting a final charge-sheet

23rd

ATC accepts the charge-sheet

26th

Defence challenges the trial under antiterrorism law

March

2nd

Prosecutor Shahid Mehmood Arain replaces prosecutor Abdul Maroof

6th

ATC dismisses defences’ plea to transfer the trial to a regular court

7th

Plea for trial to be held under juvenile law dismissed

9th

Witness testifies in the case

13th

Sister testifies in the case

17th

Lawyer for the complainant objects to Advocate Muzaffar Solangi replacing prosecutor Shahid Mehmood Arain

19th

SHC orders replacing controversial prosecutor

20th

Law department appoints new prosecutor, Advocate Muntazir Mehdi, in accordance with SHC’s directives

20th

FIA investigator files final charge sheet

21st

SHC adjourns plea seeking removal of IO Muhammad Mubeen. Statements of two witnesses recorded

22nd

Contempt notice issued to IO Muhammad Mubeen for not producing witnesses

26th

Twist in the case as friend, neighbour change statements

April

2nd

Suspect Shahrukh Jatoi challenges trial under anti-terrorism law

2nd

Three suspects allowed better facilities in jail

3rd

Eyewitness implicates all suspects in murder

9th

Prosecution gives up seven more witnesses

10th

Two witnesses testify

11th

Prosecutor excludes five more witnesses

13th

Hearing not held due to transfer of third prosecutor

15th

Law department reappoints prosecutor

17th

Defence’s plea to examine forensic expert dismissed. Former IO records statement

20th

ATC annoyed with key witnesses for adjournment. Dismisses plea to declare two witnesses as ‘hostile’

22nd /23rd

IO Muhammad Mobeen records statement

Published in The Express Tribune, April 25th, 2013.

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Reader Comments (2)

  • Justice
    Apr 25, 2013 - 2:40AM

    Its highly admirable the way ET had followed the case, specifically this article..please keep up because the case is only alive till its in the media..please lets continue the fight for Justice!

    Recommend

  • Bilal Y Khan
    Apr 27, 2013 - 11:43PM

    very accurately recorded, thank you.

    Recommend

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