KARACHI: An antiterrorism court on Friday fixed indictment of three policemen in a case pertaining to the killing of a teenage schoolboy, dubbed a militant, in an alleged ‘staged’ shootout.

The then Sachal SHO Ismail Lashari, Inspector Shaikh Mohammad Shoaib, alias Shoaib Shooter, ASIs Mukhtiar Ali Mangi and Ghulam Shabbir and constable M. Khalid Bhatti have been booked for allegedly killing 17-year-old Anisur Rehman Soomro in a fake encounter and dubbing the victim a Taliban militant in June 2014.

The ATC-II judge was set to frame the charges against three detained accused Mukhtiar Ali, Ghulam Shabbir and Khalid Bhatti, who were produced from prison.

However, Advocates Abid Zaman and Umar Farooq filed power of attorney on behalf of the accused and pleaded for time and postponement of indictment of their clients.

Allowing the request, the judge fixed the matter for Nov 14. The judge also directed the central prison’s superintendent to get the accused Mukhtiar Ali examined at a hospital for his purported ailment and submit a report in this regard to the court on the next date of hearing.

Last month, the court had recalled pre-arrest bail of the three undertrial police officials and sent them to prison and fixed the matter for their indictment in the present case.

Former Inspectors Lashari and Shoaib Shooter, who are also nominated in the case pertaining to the killing of aspiring Waziristan model Naqeebullah Mehsud and others in an alleged staged encounter, have been declared proclaimed offenders in the present case since they absconded after obtaining pre-arrest bail.

According to the prosecution, victim Anisur Rehman was a Class-X student when he was arrested with his two friends by the Sachal Goth police near Safoora Goth in Gulistan-i-Jauhar on June12, 2014.

SHO Lashari allegedly demanded Rs500,000 for the safe release of the captive and later killed him in a fake encounter since the complainant was unable to pay the bribe, it added.

It further maintained that the slain student had been detained for 10 days at the Sachal police station before he was taken to a nearby Afghan refugee camp, where he was killed on June 22, 2014. Initially the police claimed to have killed four Taliban militants, including the victim.

Published in Dawn, November 9th, 2019