KARACHI: A model court on Friday awarded life imprisonment to a convict in an eight-year-old murder case.

The accused, M. Arif Katchi, was found guilty of killing Akbar over a petty dispute in Sept 2011 in Chanesar Goth within the remit of the Tipu Sultan police station.

On Friday, additional district and sessions judge Kamran Atta Soomro of the model criminal trial court (South) pronounced his judgement reserved earlier after recording evidence and final arguments from both sides.

The judge found the accused guilty of committing the murder and awarded him life imprisonment.

The judge also ordered him to pay Rs300,000 compensation to the legal heirs of the victim.

The court cancelled the bail of the convict and sent him to prison to serve out his sentence.

According to the prosecution Akbar had gone to bring food and when he was returning home Katchi, who was drunk, insulted and abused him on Sept 18, 2011. The matter was settled amicably, but the accused took out his pistol and opened fire on him. The victim succumbed to his wounds during his treatment at the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre.

The state prosecutor, Mohammad Atif Sitai, argued that the victim recorded his statement to the police during treatment while the testimonies of eyewitness Muddassir and another witness Hashim also corroborated with the dying declaration of the victim.

He added that the pistol was also recovered and it had matched with the empties of the bullets found from the crime scene during ballistic examination while the medical evidence also supported the prosecution’s version.

He further argued that the entire evidence fully established the role of the accused in the commissioning of the offence and pleaded to award strict punishment to him in accordance with the law.

On the other hand, the accused and his defence counsel Mohammad Aqeel Shaikh denied the allegations of the prosecution and claimed innocence.

The defence counsel contended that the allegations were false and pleaded to acquit his client of the charges levelled by the prosecution.

A case under Section 302 (premeditated murder) of the Pakistan Penal Code was registered on the complaint of the victim’s brother Mohammad Irfan.

Drug pusher convicted

The same court, meanwhile, awarded a lenient sentence of six-month imprisonment to a convict for drug peddling due to his young age.

The accused Farhan was found guilty of possessing 2,150 grams of hashish within the remit of the Boat Basin police station.

He was arrested on March 25 and booked in a case registered under Section 6/9 of the Control of Narcotic Substances Act, 1997.

Published in Dawn, July 6th, 2019