KARACHI: An antiterrorism court (ATC) on Saturday recorded testimony of an investigating officer (IO) in a case pertaining to an alleged violent protest, arson attack and ransacking of media houses following an incendiary speech of London-based Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) founder Altaf Hussain.

Then senior MQM leaders Dr Farooq Sattar, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Dr Amir Liaquat Hussain, Amir Khan, Haider Abbas Rizvi, Salman Mujahid, and Khushbakht Shujaat along with many others have been charged with facilitating the speech of Mr Hussain outside the Karachi Press Club that triggered the violent episode on Aug 22, 2016.

On Saturday, the matter came up before the ATC-II judge, when the state prosecutor produced a witness to record his statement in one of the two pending cases.

A prosecution witness, the IO of one of the identical cases, deposed that after allegedly hearing the speech of the MQM supremo, the charged party workers started towards Zainab Market from the KPC on the day of the incident.

He said that an activist, Ms Quratul Ain, was leading a group of other female party workers who ransacked the office of a TV channel.

The IO further deposed that the angry mob also set fire to a van and two motorcycles of police. He also brought the case properties (the burnt four-wheeler and two-wheeler vehicles) to the court.

Later, a court staffer inspected the case property on the directives of the judge.

After recording his testimony, the judge fixed the matter for cross-examination of the witness by the defence counsel for the accused on Nov 23.

Two identical cases were registered on behalf of the state at the Artillery Maidan police station.

Mugger gets death for killing policeman

A district court on Saturday sentenced an accused to death for killing a police official during an armed robbery in 2016.

M. Danish, aka Punchi, was found guilty of shooting 30-year-old Hasham Younus on resistance during a mugging attempt within the remit of Brigade police station in Aug 2018.

On Saturday, district and sessions’ judge (East) Haleem Ahmed pronounced his verdict.

The judge noted that the prosecution successfully proved the charges against accused Danish. The accused was also ordered to pay Rs200,000 compensation to the legal heirs of the victim. In case of default, he would have to undergo imprisonment for six months.

However, the judge ruled that the prosecution failed to prove its case against the co-accused Syed Subhan Ali.

According to the prosecution, Hasham Younus and his father Younus Nazeer were heading home from Jamshed Road when their motorcycle broke down on M.A. Jinnah Road opposite the Taj Medical Complex on the night of Aug 6, 2016.

In the meantime, an unknown armed motorcyclist came and attempted to snatch mobile phone from Hasham, who offered resistance and the accused opened fire on him and fled, it added.

The prosecution also mentioned that the victim was then serving as an inspector in the Strategic Plans Division while his father was then serving as a superintendent in the Rangers.

It said that the father rushed his son to the Civil Hospital Karachi where he succumbed to his wounds as the single bullet fired in his stomach proved fatal.

Published in Dawn, November 12th, 2019