MULTAN, June 2: A Dera Ghazi Khan anti-terrorism court sent Qari Abdul Hayee alias Qari to jail to serve the sentence, awarded to him in absentia for killing six people.

Muzaffargarh police claimed on May 29 last to have arrested Qari Hayee, the chief of his own faction of the defunct Lashkar-i-Jhangvi. He allegedly masterminded the recent bombings in Karachi.

Qari Hayee had been awarded death sentence on six counts for killing six people in an attack on an Imambargah at Sher Sultan area, Muzaffargarh, in January 1994. He had been at large since the incident took place.

After his arrest, Muzaffargarh police had presented him in a court that had remanded him to judicial custody till June 2 to present him before the court, which had awarded him the sentence.

The Dera Ghazi Khan ATC is currently without judge, and the authorities have delegated its power to the district and sessions judge for an interim period. Qari Hayee was brought to the ATC on Monday amid tight security from the Multan central jail.

He informed the court that he had not so far appealed against the sentence awarded to him in absentia. Upon this, the court ordered that the convict be sent to prison to serve the sentence.

Senior police official claimed that Qari Hayee had been the ‘master trainer’ at the Serobi camp of the LJ in Afghanistan to impart assault and combat training to the members of the banned organization.

The authorities concerned believe that most of the terrorists in the country, especially in the port city, have been trained by Qari Hayee.

NGOs: The south Punjab NGOs forum has observed that running the local district government through an unelected government officials is sheer negation of the devolution of power plan announced by the Musharraf government.

In a press statement, SPNF coordinator Ghulam Mustafa Baloch and Secretary-General Abdul Saboor said Multan was the only district in the country whose government was being headed by its district coordination officer.

The forum urged the government and the election commission of Pakistan to immediately conduct elections for the vacant slot of the district nazim to give Multan an elected head of the district government.

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