The son of senior Supreme Court lawyer Advocate Abdul Razzaq Shar, who was killed in a drive-by shooting in Quetta a day earlier, has registered a case against PTI chief Imran Khan and alleged that his father was killed at the latter’s behest, it emerged on Wednesday.
Shar was shot dead by unidentified assailants near Alamo Chowk on Airport Road on Tuesday. Police said that the deceased was on his way to the Balochistan High Court when his vehicle came under attack by unknown men armed with automatic weapons.
The lawyer received 15 bullet injuries and died on the spot. Condemning the killing, lawyers’ bodies had boycotted court proceedings across the province and announced three days of mourning.
Meanwhile, the government and the PTI had traded blame over the incident, with both sides accusing the other of having a role in the killing.
Prime minister’s aide Attaullah Tarar had alleged that the lawyer was killed at the behest of Imran to allegedly evade accountability in a treason case while PTI spokesperson Raoof Hassan had accused Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah of being behind the murder.
It may be recalled that Shar had filed a constitutional petition against the PTI chief in the Balochistan High Court, seeking proceedings against the ex-premier under Article 6 that pertained to high treason. His petition said that Imran Khan should be tried under Article 6 in light of the apex court decision which had recommended legal action against Imran Khan and Qasim Suri for illegally dissolving the National Assembly after the joint opposition had moved a no-trust motion against the PTI government in April 2022.
The first information report (FIR) was registered on the complaint of Shar’s son, Advocate Siraj Ahmed, at Quetta’s Shaheed Jamil police station on June 6.
It invoked sections 302 (intentional murder), 109 (punishment for abetment if the act abetted is committed in consequence and where no express provision is made for its punishment) and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of a common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code, read with Sections 6 and 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.
According to the FIR, Ahmed told police that he received information at 9:40am on June 6 that his father had been taken to Civil Hospital after being shot. “I immediately reached Civil Hospital where I found my father’s dead body covered in blood,” the FIR quoted him as saying.
Pointing out that his father had filed a petition under Article 6 of the Constitution against the PTI chief, he said he was “certain” about the involvement of the former premier and others from the PTI in his father’s murder because of this case.
According to the complainant, unidentified men on a motorcycle “blindly fired” at his father at Airport Road at 9:20am while he was on his way to the court.
He alleged that his father was killed at the PTI chief’s behest, adding that Shar had also told him that he had been receiving threats in connection with the case filed against Imran. The complainant sought legal action against the PTI chief.
The FIR said police also reached the hospital after receiving information about Shar’s murder and found his body covered in blood.
It was found after a “cursory examination” of the body that the deceased had suffered eight wounds on his face, neck, right arm, chest, waist and right leg, the FIR stated.
It added that the the said information was provided to the doctor on duty for post-mortem and other necessary procedure.
Lawyers boycott court proceedings
Meanwhile, lawyers continued to boycott court proceedings across Balochistan for a second day on Wednesday.
Talking to Dawn.com, Quetta Bar Association President Abid Kakar said the boycott would continue for three days. He also demanded a transparent investigation into Shar’s killing.
“We won’t sit quietly until Shar’s murderers are arrested,” Kakar added.
In a separate statement, the Balochistan High Court Bar Association condemned the government’s allegations against the PTI chief.
“A responsible government official blamed the leader of a political party for the murder without taking the lawyers’ associations and the deceased’s family into confidence,” the statement said, adding that the allegations were levelled for “political gains”.
The statement highlighted that the government’s accusations were an “attempt to influence the investigation”.
The association demanded that restraint be observed in issuing such “careless statements” and demanded that the FIR of the murder be lodged immediately.
Meanwhile, the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) said in a statement it was decided during a meeting of the Judicial Commission of Pakistan, PBC and provincial bar councils that lawyers throughout the country would observe a “complete strike” in condemnation of Shar’s killing.
“No lawyer will appear in any court to show solidarity with his (Shar) family and lawyers of the Balochistan province,” the statement said.
The statement said it was also agreed that anti-terrorism courts should conclude trials within seven days and asserted that civilians should be tried in civilian courts.