Punjab govt moves LHC against Sahiwal encounter case verdict

28 Oct 2019

Email

Mohammad Khalil, his wife and their three children were travelling in a car with their neighbour Zeeshan (not pictured) when CTD personnel stopped the vehicle and opened fire on them. — DawnNewsTV/File
Mohammad Khalil, his wife and their three children were travelling in a car with their neighbour Zeeshan (not pictured) when CTD personnel stopped the vehicle and opened fire on them. — DawnNewsTV/File

The Punjab government on Monday moved the Lahore High Court (LHC) against the acquittal of suspects in the Sahiwal firing incident in which some personnel of the Punjab Police’s Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) had allegedly gunned down four people, including three from the same family.

On Thursday, an anti-terrorism court acquitted all six personnel of the CTD who were accused of killing the four people, including a woman and a minor, in Sahiwal. Judge Arshad Hussain Bhutta gave the accused personnel the benefit of the doubt.

Following the directive of Prime Minister Imran Khan, the Punjab government on Friday had announced filing an appeal against the ATC verdict.

Punjab Additional Prosecutor Abdul Samad Khan filed the appeal today, raising objections over the release of the suspects. The Punjab government contended that either the investigation of the case went in the wrong direction or the witnesses changed their statements.

The provincial government asked the court to reverse the special court's decision and take action against those responsible for the flawed investigation in the case and those who changed their statements.

In January, Mohammad Khalil, his wife and their three children were travelling in a car, with their neighbour Zeeshan behind the steering wheel, when CTD personnel stopped the vehicle and opened fire on the passengers suspecting them to be terrorists. Khalil’s two children Umair and Muneeba had survived the attack.

The suspects said that they had information that Zeeshan had links with a terrorist outfit. They also claimed that all the victims were killed in an 'encounter' which turned out to be false after the two minor children narrated facts of the incident to the public.