ISLAMABAD, Sept 3: The Supreme Court on Monday rejected two requests for bail before arrest, one of them filed by PPP MNA Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani who is charged with playing a role in handing over five minor girls to a family to settle a murder dispute in Jacobabad.

The court also ordered police to deal strictly with people practising customs like Swara and Vanni.

“Go and seek the protection of the court of jurisdiction,” Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, heading a seven-member Supreme Court bench, observed. No case for grant of bail had been made out, he added.

The bench was hearing a complaint of anthropologist Samar Minallah against the handing over of Aamna, 5, and Bashiran, 2, daughters of Rehmatullah; Shehzadi, 6, and Meerzadi, 2, daughters of Hafeezullah; and Noor Bano, 3, daughter of Yar Ali, as compensation to the family of the murdered man.

“Why should the court grant protective bail to an influential when it rejects similar requests of the poor on technicalities,” the chief justice said.

Justice Mohammad Nawaz Abbasi said the court would not exercise any discretionary jurisdiction.

On Aug 15, the court had ordered arrest of Mr Bijarani and 10 other members of a 14-member jirga who were still free.

Three jirga members, Hafiz Qamaruddin, Yar Ali and Rehmat, have been arrested.

Besides Mr Bijarani, other members of the jirga nominated in the FIR are Peer Bharchoondi Mian Abdul Khalique, Thull Tehsil Nazim Syed Ali Akbar Banglani, Ghulam Rasool Banglani, Syed Jalal Shah, Raza Mohammad Banglani, Qamaruddin Banglani, Hafiz Banglani and Habib Banglani.

The jirga, which was presided over by Mr Bijarani, had settled a feud between two groups by offering the five girls to the victim family and fining both the groups Rs1 million each.

The dispute dates back to 1997 when Miandad Banglani was killed in a shootout over karo-kari charges between groups of Hafiz Qamaruddin and Ali Yar Banglani in Jacobabad district’s Kamal Magsi village.

Police registered the case nine years later after the media highlighted the injustice. A programme on the jirga decision recorded by a regional television was played during the hearing which contained remarks of Yar Ali and Rehmatullah in Sindhi, endorsing the allegation that the girls had been given in compensation to the victim’s family.

In June last year, the Supreme Court froze the jirga ruling of handing over the girls and ordered the district police officer of Kashmore to conduct an independent inquiry and arrest whosoever was guilty.

The other bail plea rejected by the court was of Mian Abdul Khalique who was directed to approach the SHC.

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