KARACHI, Dec 8: An anti-terrorism court on Saturday directed the superintendent of Sukkur prison to get medically examined an undertrial prisoner who was allegedly subjected to torture and to produce him before the court along with the medical report in the Nishtar Park blast case on Dec 17.
Sultan Mahmood alias Saifullah, Mufti Zakir Hussain Siddiqui and Rehmatullah — said to be associated with banned militant outfit Lashkar-i-Jhangvi — were charged with masterminding the bomb attack on Nishtar Park during an Eid Milad-un-Nabi (PBUH) congregation in April 2006.
Over 50 people, including the top leadership of the Sunni Tehreek, were killed in the explosion.
When the case came up for hearing before Judge Bashir Ahmed Khoso of the ATC-I, who is conducting the trial inside the central prison Karachi, two of the three accused persons were produced before the court.
The defence counsel submitted through an application that his two clients had recently been shifted back to Karachi from Sukkur after being subjected to maltreatment. He said Sultan was still confined in Sukkur prison and contended that he was subjected to severe torture by the jail authorities.
The counsel prayed to the court to take legal action against the jail officials concerned and direct the jailer to produce the accused persons before the court to avoid further delay as the trial had been pending for the past five years.
The court ordered the medical examination of the accused person and directed the superintendent of Sukkur prison to produce him along with the medical report before the court on the next hearing.
The Sindh government had shifted dozens of undertrial prisoners from the Karachi central prison to Hyderabad and Sukkur jails in mid-August apparently due to security concerns. Recently, most of them were shifted back to Karachi.
Over 110 people were cited as prosecution witnesses in the charge-sheet. The prosecution has so far examined five witnesses in the case.
The case (FIR No 71/06) was registered under Sections 302 (premeditated murder), 324 (attempt to commit murder), 109 (abetment), 120-B (punishment of criminal conspiracy), 114 (abettor present when offence is committed) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code and Section ¾ of the Explosive Substance Act read with Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997 at the Soldier Bazaar police station on a complaint of Mohammad Altaf Qadri.
Amanullah alias Mufti Ilyas, Qari Abid Iqbal and Khalid are the absconding accused.