Senior officers of the Islamabad and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) police on Thursday appeared in the dock to explain their negligence in registering the murder case of the ex-daughter-in-law of the federal capital’s police chief.
A three-judge Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry was apparently not convinced with the defence forwarded by top officers of the Islamabad and K-P police in the suo motu case.
K-P’s top police officials stuck to the argument that they had not registered a murder case because there was no evidence of murder.
They could offer no defence except excuses as K-P Additional Advocate General Arshad Shah informed the bench that an additional secretary had initiated an inquiry to fix the responsibility for not registering the case in time.
“Peshawar SSP Operations Imran Shahid and the SHO have been suspended,” he added.
Inspector General (IG) Ahsan Ghani said a murder case had been registered against the victim’s father, Darya Khan Bangash, and brother, Khalid Khan Bangash on the complaint of Zahida Bibi, who accused the two of her daughter Waheeda’s murder. “The father has obtained bail, while the brother is in police custody.”
The police officials from K-P had been put on notice by the apex court to explain their failure in registering a case over the murder of Waheeda Bibi who was found dead in her brother’s house in Peshawar on May 19.
The arguments advanced by Islamabad IG Bani Amin, SSP Operations Yasin Farooq, SP Saddar Jamil Hashmi and subordinate officials responsible for registering the FIR at the Margalla Police Station did not convince the bench, either. SSP Farooq had said the IG had ordered that the case be lodged despite the fact the incident took place in Peshawar.
IG Bani Amin said he did not try to influence the case and broke down into tears, saying he did not know why his ex-daughter-in-law’s mother and sister had implicated him.
Deputy Attorney-General Sajid Ilyas Bhatti contended before the court that the Islamabad Police registered the case without jurisdiction.
The bench reserved its judgment, but the verdict is expected to be announced shortly.
Victim’s brother, sister-in-law remanded
In a related development, a Peshawar court handed over Waheeda’s brother and sister-in-law in police custody after they were arrested during a raid.
The University Town police produced the accused before Judicial Magistrate Nasrullah, who handed them over to the police on a two-day physical remand.
Zahida Bibi had lodged an FIR against her husband, son and her daughter-in-law, after the K-P Police were directed to register an FIR by the apex court.
The police had recovered Waheeda’s body from a house in University Town. Waheeda was in Peshawar to discuss the matter of her inheritance with her parents and brother. Khalid had told his ex-brother-in-law that she had slipped from the stairs and died on the spot.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 12th, 2013.