LAHORE: Lahore High Court Chief Justice Sardar Muhammad Shamim Khan will take up a writ petition on Tuesday (today) demanding an impartial inquiry into the Sahiwal killings through a judicial commission.

A lawyer, Mian Asif Mahmood, filed the petition pleading that the joint investigation team (JIT) formed by the provincial government will not be able to find out the truth and hold the responsible police personnel accountable for their crime.

Since the members of the JIT belonged to the police and other security forces, he expressed apprehensions that it would not go against the personnel of Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) involved in the killing of a family.

He pointed out that the statistics of Punjab police revealed that it conducted 247 encounters in 2017, 91 in 2018 and about seven were reported during the first month of 2019.

The petitioner asked the court to direct the prime minister to constitute a judicial commission to hold an impartial inquiry into the incident. He submitted that the Punjab chief minister should also be directed to furnish a copy of a detailed report regarding the incident and other fake encounters and action taken against the police personnel.

He also sought a direction for the provincial police chief to bar his officials from opening fire on fleeing suspects and not equip them with automatic weapons.

The petitioner also pleaded that the provincial government be directed to initiate a compensatory relief package for the victims of the Sahiwal incident and execute the guilty cops within 90 days as it happened in the case of Zainab in Kasur.

Published in Dawn, January 22nd, 2019