GUJRAT: An undertrial was shot dead, while a policeman and two other prisoners were injured when a man opened fire on the premises of Kharian judicial complex on Tuesday, before he was arrested by police.

According to police, a prisoner facing murder trial, Sheeraz, a resident of Sandanwala village was brought to Kharian judicial complex from Gujrat jail in a prison van, along with other undertrials, for hearing of the case.

As soon as the police guard brought the prisoners inside the judicial complex, an armed man, later identified as Ghulam Abbas of Jhang district, who was already present there, opened indiscriminate fire.

As a result, Sheeraz, who, according to police, was actual target of the attacker, received bullets and died on the spot.

A police constable, Babar, and two prisoners -- Shahzaib of Charyaola and Gull Khan of Dinga -- were injured in the firing, the police said.

Reacting promptly, the on-duty policemen overpowered the attacker and arrested him, also recovering from him the weapon used in the firing.

Police say the attacker seems to be a hit man, who might have been hired by the rivals of the deceased prisoner. Further investigation into the incident is underway, they say.

The police shifted the body to the Kharian Tehsil Headquarters Hospital, while the injured persons were rushed to the Aziz Bhatti Shaheed Teaching Hospital.

Reacting to the firing incident on courts premises, Kharian Tehsil Bar Association went on strike in protest against the security lapse.

The bar officials demanded the district police officer (DPO) to take measures to improve security in and around the judicial complex.

A spokesman for Gujrat police said DPO Ghazanfar Shah had ordered investigation SP to hold an inquiry into the incident and submit a report to fix responsibility. He said in the light of the inquiry report action would be taken against those held responsible for the security lapse.

Published in Dawn, September 21st, 2022

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