KARACHI: The Sindh High Court on Wednesday granted bail to seven officials of the K-Electric (KE) after the power utility reached a settlement with the father of an eight-year-old boy whose both arms had to be amputated following a high-tension electric wire fell on him.
The seven officials — deputy manager Saeed Ahmed, assistant engineer Syed Mohammad Asim, Asif Iqbal, Saqib Husain, Sagheer Raza, Mirza Asif Beg and Mohammad Mushtaq — were booked and arrested in a case registered by the boy’s father pertaining to the Aug 25 incident in Ahsanabad, off Superhighway, in which the boy, Muhammad Umar, lost his both arms.
They moved bail applications before the SHC after the trial court dismissed their same pleas.
When the bail applications came up for hearing before a bench of the SHC headed by Justice Salahuddin Panhwar on Wednesday, counsel for complainant Haider Imam Rizvi and counsel for applicants Abid Zuberi filed separate statements informing the bench that a settlement had been reached between the two sides.
The power utility will provide Rs1m compensation and Rs25,000 monthly stipend
The counsel for applicants told the bench in a statement that the power utility would pay Rs1 million to the complainant and Rs25,000 monthly stipend with an annual increase of five per cent. It will also bear his all expenses on medical treatment for bionic/prosthetic arms within the country.
The statement further said that the power utility would also bear all educational expenses of the victim till he obtained a masters degree; the monthly stipend would continue to be paid till the age of 24 and the KE would offer him a job depending on his qualification after the age of 24. The monthly electricity bill of the complainant would also be paid by the power utility.
The KE will also bear the domestic travel expenses and accommodation of victim along with his parents when they travel for the purpose of treatment, it added.
The lawyer further said that this offer was payable/executable upon withdrawal of the case, adding that the offer would not be treated as a precedent as the same was being offered in good faith for the welfare of the injured child.
The counsel for complainant said that the change in the management and administration of KE will not have any effect on the agreement.
Complainant Muhammad Arif, who was also present in court along with his counsel, informed the bench that he was ready to withdraw the FIR since they reached a compromise.
Therefore, the bench granted bail to the applicants against a surety bond of Rs50,000 each and also directed the investigating officer to place the compromise agreement between the two parties before the trial court.
The KE had also agreed before the Senate’s Functional Committee on Human Rights on Tuesday for providing financial assistance and other several benefits to the victim.
A case was registered under Sections 337 H-1 (punishment for hurt by rash or negligent act) and 336 (punishment for itlafi-salahiyyat-i-udw, or destroys or permanently impairs functioning power or capacity of an organ of the body of another person or cause permanent disfigurement,) of the Pakistan Penal Code at the SITE Superhighway Industrial police station.
Missing persons’ cases
A two-judge SHC bench on Wednesday expressed annoyance over law enforcement agencies for failing to recover missing persons, including a 70-year-old man.
The court directed the law-enforcers to file progress reports on the next date of hearing about efforts made for their recovery.
While hearing dozens of identical petitions filed by relatives of “missing persons”, the bench also directed for constitution of a new joint investigation team in the case of four men.
The bench also deplored that the investigating officers in these cases were being transferred on almost every hearing.
Froze Khan, 70, reportedly went missing from the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital in 2014 and since then his whereabouts are not known.
Published in Dawn, September 20th, 2018