KARACHI: After five days of the Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) announcing death sentence to two suspects in the Shahzeb Khan murder case, one of the convicts, Shahrukh Jatoi, challenged the verdict by filing an appeal in the Sindh High Court on Wednesday.
Judge Ghulam Mustafa Memon of ATC-III handed capital punishment to Shahrukh Jatoi and Nawab Siraj Talpur for murdering 20-year-old Shahzeb Khan. Court had also given life imprisonment to Nawab Sajjad Talpur and Ghulam Murtaza Lashari.
The appeal filed by Advocate Shaukat Zubedi stated that the conviction and sentence awarded to Shahrukh Jatoi was not justified by the evidence placed on record as the trial court’s judge had misread the evidence. “Whenever doubts came up in the case, the court ruled in favour of the prosecution whereas according to the established principles of law, the benefit of the doubt is always given to the accused,” he argued.
It has been claimed in the appeal that the complainant improved his first statement given to the police under Section 154 Code of Criminal Procedure and included his supplementary statement under section 161, nominating four accused, said the lawyer.
The appellant claimed that the complainant’s version in the FIR never corroborated any circumstantial or medical evidence while the improved statement of the witness could not be relied upon as it affects the credibility of the evidence.
The high court has been appealed to set aside Shahrukh’s conviction after examining the record of the proceedings initiated by the trial court and acquit him on all charges. The Talpur brothers had appealed against their conviction on Monday, however, no appeal has been filed on behalf of their servant, Ghulam Murtaza Lashari.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 13th, 2013.
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