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Chief of Lashkar-i-Jhangvi Malik Ishaq. — File photo
Chief of Lashkar-i-Jhangvi Malik Ishaq. — File photo

RAWALPINDI: A Rawalpindi anti-terrorist court on Thursday acquitted Malik Ishaq, chief of proscribed Lashkar-i-Jhangvi (LJ) militant group, in three cases relating to terrorism, DawnNews reported.

Judge Rana Masood Akhtar issued acquittal orders for Ishaq in the cases, saying the evidence against Ishaq was not sufficient for further proceedings.

The had been registered against Ishaq at police stations in Attock, Hazro and Talagang and he was also previously arrested over charges relating hate-speech and inciting violence.

Having faced charges relating to killing of more than 100 people, most of them Shia Muslims, and the attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in March 2009, Ishaq has spent around 15 years in Pakistani jails.

He was initially a member of Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP), a banned Sunni extremist group but later dissociated himself from it for his alleged ‘violent policies’ and formed his own outfit. The LJ was proscribed by the Pakistan government as a terror group soon after its inception in early 1990s.

After reaching an agreement with Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ) chief Ahmed Ludhianvi, Ishaq joined as second-in-command of the former SSP in 2012.

In Feb 2014, the United States added Ishaq to its list of most wanted international terrorists along with keeping the LJ on a list of international terrorist organisations.

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Comments (69) Closed

AwaisAli May 29, 2014 02:57pm

This is what our judiciary is doing. IK is very much correct in saying that the judges are corrupt and biased. The recent example of chairman PCB and now this, i wonder what would this level of justice give to the country other than deterioration.

Ahmad May 29, 2014 03:02pm

And our honorable judges wonder why there is no respect for the judiciary

anonymous May 29, 2014 03:15pm

goodbye justice..

Syed May 29, 2014 03:26pm

Pakistan's main problem is the execution of justice. The murderers will roam free until we have a system to implement justice and better investigation techniques.

Akram May 29, 2014 03:26pm

if we cannot convict him here, he should be deported to the US to face trial there. The ATC has failed Pakistan here.

Ahmed May 29, 2014 03:41pm

Wasnt the PPO meant to prevent exactly these type of obscenities?

Ajamal May 29, 2014 03:44pm

This "Circus of Justice" must end. If our judges are more concerned about their own safety, they should become a "clerk" like me.

A2Z May 29, 2014 03:46pm

Guys it is not judiciary but the problem is prosecution which is not providing enough evidence. Judges cannot hang anyone on the basis of news or what we believe. They have to follow a set procedure. It is responsibility of parliamentarians to strengthen the law but what can you expect from them when they even don't attend the sessions.

Rashid Ishaq May 29, 2014 03:56pm

@AwaisAli ..Awais IK also says not to kill them by army and no court in the whole world punishes anyone if proofs are not provided. Court itself does not go in the field and find proofs to prove anyone guilty.

Kashif May 29, 2014 04:08pm

Justice Delayed is Justice Denied BUT this decision ...... :( Certainly, Today Courts Lost their moral authority.

Atif May 29, 2014 04:11pm

And these judges would punish a painter for making banners against judiciary

Sajjad Razza May 29, 2014 04:43pm

This guy has confessed so many murders and still he is acquitted. God save this country.

Azmat May 29, 2014 04:47pm

surprise, surprise, surprise!!!

Lashkar-e-Justice(LJ) May 29, 2014 04:48pm

No surprises, this is now normal in Pakistan.

syed baqar ahsan May 29, 2014 04:53pm

just nothing to say on our helplessness-this is our way of justice-judges and witnesses are either killed,threatened or spoiled by the police by declaring it sectarian killing and remain devoid of responsibility.

M N May 29, 2014 04:59pm

It is not just judiciary. What about police that prepare cases; politicians who support people like Ishaq, morally as well as financially; so called Ulama who provide platforms where hatred is spread.

We need to educate ourselves, especially our children. We are human beings, we are Pakistanis. We are to live together.

Goga Nalaik May 29, 2014 04:59pm

I'm disgusted by the news!

This man publically confessed that he had killed 100 shias and added that if released, he would kill more ... and there you are!

There is no justice in this country Hopeless situation

Sid May 29, 2014 05:28pm

when murderers go scot free after committing crimes in broad day light with the world knowing what they did.. one would be a fooool to believe such a person would have been punished!

Rasool Bakhsh Tahir May 29, 2014 05:35pm

Sadly not a single terrorist has yet been punished by Pakistani Courts. Justice system of Pakistan is worst in the world. There is no system of accountability of judiciary. Onus of this inefficiency and non-accountability rests on Parliament. If the system continues, we will have to face another martial law and this time there will be a major overhauling of the all the institutions.

with Indian flag on border May 29, 2014 05:39pm

lost faith in justice have loosed me for ever

Shah May 29, 2014 05:59pm

Only the weak face jail in this country.

Muhammad Naqvi May 29, 2014 06:08pm

Sorry this is an outrage. How can this man be let free, considering death and mayhem his organistaion has caused. He is not just anybody, he is the chief of proscribed Lashkar-i-Jhangvi (LJ) militant group and his group has openly and admitted many acts of terror in Pakistan.

AwaisAli May 29, 2014 06:10pm

@Rashid Ishaq If a lay man like you and me know that he is a terrorist, killer of more then 100 men, head of LeJ, carries on blatant activities then our honorable judges are no kids. They are there to make wise decisions. But B-league has given cover to these so called Jihadis. I remember when he was acquitted from his charges in karachi CM punjab send for an helicopter to his rescue

Tahir A May 29, 2014 06:19pm

They will pass the same judgment of acquittal to Mumtaz Qadri too for lack of evidence. They would probably want the deceased victim to come out of the grave and give evidence otherwise the case will be dismissed as insufficient proof.

Qasim May 29, 2014 06:32pm

This is all said in fear of this man...I feel for those who had hoped that justice would prevail

pathanoo May 29, 2014 06:36pm

Justice in Pakistan?? Are you kidding me?????

Fiz May 29, 2014 06:38pm

Where there is smoke, there is a fire also. If this man is such an angel then why is he arrested all the time? Looks like judges are also afraid of him.

Naseer May 29, 2014 06:38pm

This is the Pakistan we have, where known and confessed criminals are scott free and honest leader like Pervaiz Musharraf is facing drummed up charges. Very soon this government will also sell the land presently occupied by Quid e Azam's mausoleum.

pathanoo May 29, 2014 06:39pm

The only justice that can be delivered to people like Malik Ishaq will come from American Drones. Or else, get ready for more of the same in perpetuity.

IKE May 29, 2014 06:48pm

Another Terrorist goes free. However, I do not blame the Court. The Court did not acquit this man because he is innocent but for the want of sufficiency of evidence. It is prosecution's job to present enough evidence. The Court cannot makeup evidence. Basically, this case points finger at the police and the prosecutor for failing to do their job.

pakistani May 29, 2014 06:51pm

The current Punjab law minister clearly takes side with this group, and I can bet this minister has played a role in his acquittal, who has repeated confessed of killing scores of people, and promised to do it again. And our courts have given him this opportunity again!!!

Sonny Afridi May 29, 2014 07:11pm

What a joke. Curse be upon the beard of this terrorist and his sympathizers. Judiciary - failure.

Aussie May 29, 2014 07:16pm

This judiciary is more corrupt than the police department that's why no one respects them.

Mustafa May 29, 2014 07:28pm

Military courts must be established to try cases of militancy and terrorism against people or state of Pakistan.

Fakhr May 29, 2014 07:39pm

What would be the fate of Pakistan. This man accepted himself publicly that he was a murderer. What evidence does court require then? Hopeless situation.

MARK May 29, 2014 07:54pm

Lack of evidence, judiciary is like not only blind but deaf and dumb also. When they will be presented in front of Allah they will be rightly sentenced. Insha Allah

Kabeer May 29, 2014 07:58pm

@Rashid Ishaq Courts gave him unlimited dates on each hearing to this criminal hence providing him enough time to kill all the witnesses please read the whole case and you will find amazing instances of justice espacially in his case

tinker bell May 29, 2014 08:43pm

Hopeless. ..

Zafar May 29, 2014 08:48pm

This decision and many others like it confirm that we are reaching an inflection point soon. What Pakistan is today is because of this judicial system - you can get away with anything and everything. Any which way you look, there is injustice, and the perpetrators are roaming free and making a mockery of those asking for their rights and justice. This is a "Zulm Ka Nizaam" which won't last for too long as it is against nature. I don't know how it will come to an end, but I can safely say that the end is near.

tinker bell May 29, 2014 08:54pm


trolley May 29, 2014 09:05pm

What Hypocrisy !! When this gent is let loose by the courts all the Pakistanis are crying foul , whereas everyone is ready to jump to the defense of Hafeez Said , the perpetrator of the Mumbai carnage , saying that he has been exonerated by the courts hence he is innocent

Amir Mahmood May 29, 2014 09:38pm

All influential crocked people were acquitted of criminal wrong doings by the courts in the past and this tradition is still alive.

malik May 29, 2014 09:41pm

In weak societies people don't speak up against such brutal killers so no doubt their would be insufficient evidence. Court need to consider the current circumstances and the death sentence should be given on suspicion of such hate crimes.

zak May 29, 2014 09:58pm

Just stop killing people based on who they worship. It is not up to anyone to dictate who they should worship, that is true Islam.

Sabir Hameed May 29, 2014 10:10pm

Judges and their families are bound to do what 9 m.m. guns can say to them in streets and in their homes by these terrorist killers.

Amjad Wyne May 29, 2014 10:17pm

The best thing about Pakistan's justice system is that there is never a "sufficient evidence" against those that have sufficient power or sufficient money.

Husain Jan May 29, 2014 11:19pm

@Sajjad Razza He is on the list of "Most wanted International terrorists" and he is reported to have confessed to killings of over 100 Shia Muslims..and yet...yet...our prosecutors fail to present enough evidence in the court which led to his release. In such a case the court could easily have ordered prosecution to arrange for more evidence instead of deciding to close the cases. If enough evidence can not be arranged even against such internationally recognized terrorist then what should we say to our prosecutors except Shabaash- Bravo. No wonder then that the masses have no other opinion except that the N-league chiefs - the Shariff brothers - are not interested in punishing the terrorists as even those are not being hanged who have been sentenced to death long ago and people like Burney are playing dirty role in this respect by asking the PM to continue with the moratorium. It is beyond comprehension as to why Burney saheb is expressing solidarity with even those who are proven killers of hundreds of innocent.

dj May 29, 2014 11:27pm

Pak, you get what you sow. Pak, Zia and Bhutto all appeased and nutured Islamists now time to reap the reward.

Yawar May 29, 2014 11:27pm

Is this the Azaad judiciary we have been fighting for?

Danial May 29, 2014 11:51pm

I hope the judiciary is willing to take the burden of responsibility for each murder this man will commit

Toori May 29, 2014 11:57pm

Strong hands are behind,isn't true that Punjab is the safe heaven of LJ

Still freeman May 30, 2014 12:21am

He kills 1000 people in front of one million others. out of that one million 99.9% don't come up to witness the crime and only 1000 agree to play with their lives and come forward. Ishaq kills 998 out of these 1000 brave guys but 2 lucky guys succeed to save their lives and provide "ENOUGH EVIDENCE" to the courts to prevail justice. Wow.

Fareed May 30, 2014 01:14am

"Having faced charges relating to killing of more than 100 people, most of them Shia Muslims, and the attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in March 2009," Who will dare & appear as witness against him ? Judges have been coerced, witnesses threatened. He is walking free. This is called total capitulation of the government to a confirmed terrorist. If he was in jail for 15 years, was he treated like a common criminal ? I guess not, he probably was treated as a political prisoner with all the privileges.

farooq Mughal May 30, 2014 02:56am

Witnesses , judges all are terrorized, no one has courage to sand against them, where is justice ?

GK May 30, 2014 03:06am

What a shame.

Ghufran Khan May 30, 2014 03:08am

Is this justice?

Life May 30, 2014 04:47am

@AwaisAli I don't know much about Pakistani judiciary but I believe that if substantial evidence is not produced no one should be convicted. If the Judge decide the case over emotions than human life will become vulnerable and innocent people like you and me will be hanged till death.

Daanish May 30, 2014 05:02am

Don't blame only judges, this is the failure of police, witnesses, and our investigation methods.

Judges follow the rule of law. Police usually is the culprit in bending the truth !!

Javaid May 30, 2014 05:37am

@Rashid Ishaq Indeed justice is blind.

Syed Zaidi May 30, 2014 05:42am

@Sajjad Razza , Why

Faisal Tanveer May 30, 2014 06:23am

Supremacy of the Judiciary should be respected under all scenarios.

hanifsmile May 30, 2014 06:50am

Its not only the judge, it the whole system, right evidence are witness, without any protection who will go to court. Everything is wrong with the system

Janzeb May 30, 2014 06:51am

Every man for himself....There is only street justice is the solution. Where after killing and confessing more than 100 innocents, charges are dropped. How could one live peacefully.

Yawar May 30, 2014 07:17am

What happened to the police encounter when it was needed most?

AdHawk May 30, 2014 07:37am

Impossible for a judge to place his family in jeopardy when he knows full well these state 'assets' are too big to fail.

Kalash wala May 30, 2014 07:37am

@Toori Shahbaz harbors TTP. Le J, Jaish e M, Sipah e Sahabah, Punjabi Taliban Jundullah are just a few among others. They even collect money. Weekly. Have large drum size boxes in neighborhoods. Secured and chained. Where, anyone can drop their donations. Just like dropping off a letter. Every now and then they have donation drives. See their banners all over Lahore.

Rahim Khan Gill May 30, 2014 08:35am

No faith in law and order anymore.

malik May 30, 2014 09:45am

Somehow they can never find any evidence against terrorists. But they always find evidence against blasphemy accused. What a coincidence?

Parvez Jun 01, 2014 09:13am

This is a tragedy. What law, what Islam, what society. I am ashamed, truly ashamed, to be called a Pakistani.