KARACHI: Two men accused of preparing the toxic liquor that claimed 12 lives on Sunday have been sent on remand till August 15.
On Tuesday, a district and sessions court remanded the physical custody of two men, Jamil Rafiq and Babar Siddique, who used to sell moonshine (homemade liquor) with counterfeit labels. Following the verification of the remand papers and other official documents, Mumtaz Hussain Solangi, a judicial magistrate in district South, remanded the men when the police produced them before the court.
The police had claimed to have arrested the suspects but their third accomplice, Dilbar Hussain alias Dilawar, who the police believed to be the ring leader, managed to escape. All the victims belonged to the Christian community and lived in the Azam Basti neighbourhood of Mehmoodabad, where a large quantity of toxic liquor was sold from a house, claimed the police.
On the complaint of one of the victims’ relatives, Younus Barkat, the police had registered a case, No.207/13, under sections 302 (premeditated murder), 322 (manslaughter), 337 (bodily hurts) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code at Mehmoodabad police station.
During the course of the investigation, the police had also seized 10 empty wine bottles along with some bogus labels, 18 bottles filled with raw liquor and a water cooler on the indication of the suspects. Following the recovery, the Mehmoodabad police, on behalf of the state, had registered another case (209/13) under section 3/4 of the Control of Narcotics Substance Act, 1997, against the suspects.
During the past years, several deaths from the consumption of toxic liquor were reported from the minority-dominated Zaman Town and Shanti Nagar.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 14th, 2013.