LAHORE: A Lahore High Court (LHC) division bench on Thursday postponed until March 2 the hearing of bail applications of seven people accused of lynching a Christian couple in Kot Radha Kishan last year, to record their statements.
The bench was informed that the Supreme Court had taken suo motu notice of the incident and would take up the matter on February 26.
Haris Bashir, Advocate Waqas Bashir, Arsalan Attique, Usman Attique, Muhammad Hanif, Abdul Latif and Nisar Ahmed had filed the applications after an anti-terrorism court turned down their plea for bail.
Counsel for Advocate Waqas Bashir is Advocate Arif Sindhu, a former Kasur Bar Association president. He appears before the court with a battery of around 20 advocates.
Counsel for Muhammad Hanif is Advocate Rai Bashir Ahmed, a former member of the Punjab Bar Council and the judicial commission on the appointment of judges.
The accused have taken a plea of alibi saying that they were not present at the crime scene and that police had wrongfully implicated them in the case.
On November 4, 2014, a mob of more than 400 people had tortured to death Sajjad Masih and his wife Shama Bibi – kiln workers from Chak 59 in Kot Radha Kishan – after accusing them of desecrating the Holy Quran.
Police had submitted a challan against more than 50 people in the anti-terrorism court. Of the 59 nominated accused arrested in the case, 11 had filed bail applications that were dismissed by the trial court.
Another 12 accused have filed bail applications before the trial court. These are pending.
The applicants’ counsel submitted that police had implicated them in the case at the behest of some of their opponents. He said police had not even recorded their statements.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 20th, 2015.
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