A local court in Islamabad on Sunday remanded six officials of Therapyworks, including owner Tahir Zahoor, to day-long physical custody in connection with the Noor Mukadam murder case.
The suspects were arrested by police the previous night and accused of "concealing evidence" related to the murder of Noor — daughter of former Pakistani diplomat Shaukat Mukadam, was found dead at a residence in Islamabad's upscale Sector F-7/4 on July 20.
The suspects, who are in addition to the already apprehended key suspect Zahir Zakir Jaffer and his parents, were presented in the court of Judicial Magistrate Shahzad Khan, who granted their one-day physical remand against Inspector Legal Sajid Cheema's request for three days.
Subsequently, the magistrate ordered that the suspects be produced before the court tomorrow (Monday) at 10:30am.
The court order, a copy of which is available with Dawn.com, said Zahoor was in contact with Zahir's parents following Noor's murder, and subsequently a team from Therapyworks was sent to the crime scene.
"The real facts are yet to be determined by the investigation in respect of the present accused persons and their role in the whole occurrence. It is necessary and right of the present accused persons to be interrogated to bring on [the] surface the real facts," the court order reads.
Zahoor's counsel told the court that his client was diabetic and arrested despite cooperating when called for an investigation. "This is the first case in which witnesses have been arrested," he said.
He claimed that Zahir had already confessed of his friendship with and subsequent murder of Noor upon seeing his proposal for marriage turned down. He said Zahir had made contact with his parents after the murder and argued that the remaining suspects, including Therapyworks employees, had no connection with the case.
At this, the magistrate remarked: "I cannot understand how these people are involved in the murder."
Meanwhile, the suspects said that they had cooperated with the authorities and were at the police station for the previous four days but no investigation was conducted.
At this, the investigation officer assured them that they would be released after two days if found innocent.
Noor, 27, was found murdered at a residence in Islamabad's upscale Sector F-7/4 on July 20.
A first information report (FIR) was registered later the same day against Jaffer, who was arrested from the site of the murder, under Section 302 (premeditated murder) of the Pakistan Penal Code on the complaint of the victim's father.
In his complaint, Shaukat Mukadam had stated that he had gone to Rawalpindi on July 19 to buy a goat for Eidul Azha, while his wife had gone out to pick up clothes from her tailor. When he had returned home in the evening, the couple found their daughter Noor absent from their house in Islamabad.
They had found her cellphone number to be switched off, and started a search for her. Sometime later, Noor had called her parents to inform them that she was travelling to Lahore with some friends and would return in a day or two, according to the FIR, a copy of which is available with Dawn.com.
The complainant said he had later received a call from the suspect, son of Zakir Jaffer, whose family were the ex-diplomat's acquaintances. The suspect had informed Shaukat that Noor was not with him, the FIR said.
At around 10pm on July 20, the victim's father had received a call from Kohsar police station, informing him that Noor had been murdered.
Police had subsequently taken the complainant to Zahir's house in Sector F-7/4 where he discovered that his "daughter has been brutally murdered with a sharp-edged weapon and beheaded", according to the FIR.
Mukadam, who identified his daughter's body, has sought the maximum punishment under the law against Zahir for allegedly murdering his daughter.