Baldia case: warrant out for suspect

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Qureshi disclosed that the factory was set on fire after its owners failed to pay protection money: JIT report said.—AFP/File
Qureshi disclosed that the factory was set on fire after its owners failed to pay protection money: JIT report said.—AFP/File

KARACHI: A sessions court on Tuesday issued non-bailable warrant for the arrest of Rizwan Qureshi, who has been on bail in half a dozen cases, again after his guarantors sought time to produce him in court.

Qureshi, who along with his accomplices, has been charged in an illicit weapon and five murder cases, made the headlines in recent weeks when the Pakistan Rangers filed a joint investigation team (JIT) report before the Sindh High Court during the hearing of a petition about the Baldia factory fire case.

Know more: MQM disowns ‘worker’ who blamed it for factory fire

The murder and illegal arms cases were fixed for evidence of prosecution witnesses before the additional district and sessions judge, Tariq Mehmood Khoso, who is conducting the trial in the judicial complex in the central prison.

The court had earlier issued the non-bailable warrant for Qureshi’s arrest for March 17 and put the surety on notice when he did not turn up on Feb 25.

Qureshi has been on bail in all the six cases since October 2014.

When the cases came up for hearing on Tuesday, the two guarantors appeared in court and sought time for his production.

The court reissued the warrant for the arrest of Qureshi and asked the police to produce him before it on April 11.

According to the prosecution, Rizwan Qureshi was arrested in June 2013 for allegedly carrying a sub-machine gun and during interrogation he disclosed his involvement in the other cases. He along with his accomplices allegedly killed Mohammad Idrees, Syed Raheel and Salahuddin in July 2011 in North Nazimabad, it added.

The prosecution said that the accused along with his aides was also involved in the killing of Mohammad Furqan and Ahmed Ali at a poultry shop in Korangi in October 2012, while he was also involved in the killing of Bismillah Khan at his restaurant in New Karachi in February 2010.

The hit man was also charged with the murder of a roadside vendor, Abdul Hakeem, near a park in New Karachi in May 2010 and Noor Zaman in August 2008 in New Karachi.

According to the JIT report, prepared in June 2013 and submitted in the SHC on Feb 6, Rizwan Qureshi disclosed that the factory was set on fire after its owners failed to pay protection money.

The JIT report marked him as a Muttahida Qaumi Movement worker, a charge vehemently denied by the party.

Published in Dawn, March 18th, 2015

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