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KARACHI, Aug 24: The Sindh High Court on Friday issued a notice to the special judge of the Control of Narcotic Substances (CNS)-I on an appeal filed by the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) against award of lenient sentences to certain convicts in narcotics cases.

ANF special public prosecutor Syed Ashfaq Hussain Rizvi submitted in the SHC division bench headed by Justice Shahid Anwar Bajwa that the special judge on Jan 16, 2012 awarded five years rigorous imprisonment to a suspect found guilty of possessing 56 kilograms of hashish.

On May 2, 2012, the CNS-I court awarded another person, Muhammad Arshad, lesser sentence than he deserved for possessing 1.05 kilos of contraband, the prosecutor said, adding that the same court awarded six years rigorous imprisonment to Sajid Shah and Waheed Bux who were found guilty of possessing 9,379 kilograms of contrabands.

The ANF prosecutor submitted that awarding lenient sentences was a violation of the guidelines laid down by Supreme Court in the case of Ghulam Murtaza vs state (PLD Lahore 362).

The SHC bench issued a notice to the respondent and adjourned the hearing to a date to be fixed later by the court’s office.

Plea against elder brother

The Sindh High Court on Friday ordered the Central Prison Karachi authorities to produce a convict, whose brother has sought death sentence for him.

Sharafat Hussain, who himself is in jail in connection with some other case, sent an application to the SHC chief justice praying for death sentence to his elder brother, Shafqat Hussain.

He informed the court that his wife, Safia Bibi, was killed by Shafqat Hussain with the help of Abid Khan and Shahana Bibi in 2009 to usurp their share in property. However, he added, the additional district and sessions judge-II, Malir, awarded life imprisonment to Shafqat Hussain on Nov 14, 2011.

He stated that the trial court had awarded lenient sentence and prayed to the court to enhance it to death sentence. Shafqat Hussain, who was produced in the court, stated that he had already challenged his conviction by filing a criminal revision appeal in the high court.

A division bench headed by Justice Shahid Anwar Bajwa directed the court office to club together the present application for enhanced sentence the defendant’s appeal against conviction. It also ordered the prison authorities to produce the applicant and defendant on Sept 3.

‘Illegal detention’

A division bench headed by Sindh High Court Chief Justice Mushir Alam on Friday issued notices to the home secretary, central prison chief, deputy attorney general and advocate-general on a petition challenging detention of a convict upon his arrival in Karachi from Sri Lanka.

Fareed Khan, presently detained in the central prison, informed the court in his petition that he was convicted by a Sri Lankan court and served out the sentences. However, he stated, upon his return home he was detained.

Through his counsel, Abdul Sadiq Tanoli, the petitioner submitted that he had gone to Sri Lanka through a travel agent and was arrested on May 17, 2007 after seizure of a suitcase containing contrabands from him.

He stated that he was deported after serving out the sentence awarded to him by the Sri Lankan court but was arrested on arrival in Karachi. He further stated that he was sent to the jail, which was a violation of the Section 9 (1) of the Transfer of Offenders Ordinance, 2002.

He prayed for court’s intervention against his illegal detention.

After preliminary hearing, the bench issued notices to the respondents and directed the jail chief to submit the petitioner’s jail roll in court.

It also directed the court office to club together two identical petitions and fix a hearing of the cases for the same date.—PPI