LHC orders judicial inquiry into Sahiwal incident

LHC orders judicial inquiry into Sahiwal incident
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LAHORE: A Lahore High Court (LHC) division bench on Thursday ordered for a judicial inquiry into the Sahiwal incident .

The bench ordered the district and sessions judge Sahiwal to depute a judicial magistrate for the purpose, with a direction to complete the process in one month.

The bench, headed by LHC Chief Justice Sardar Muhammad Shamim Khan, passed the orders while hearing the petitions, filed by Muhammad Jalil, brother of victim Khalil, and others for formation of a judicial commission on the Sahiwal incident .

At the outset of the proceedings, joint investigation team (JIT) head Syed Ijaz Shah appeared before the bench and submitted that the statements of eyewitnesses including Muhammad Jalil, Muhammad Jamil, Muhammad Afzaal, Umair Khalil and Dr Nadeem Abbas had been recorded under Section 161 of the CrPC.

However, a counsel on behalf of petitioners argued that the JIT had not recorded statements of many eyewitnesses and various videos had been uploaded by citizens on the social media with a complaint that their statements were not being recorded.

At this, the chief justice expressed annoyance over the JIT head for not recording statements of the witnesses and questioned why the court orders were not being implemented in this regard.

To which, the JIT head promised to record statements of all witnesses who would appear before the team.

In response to a court query about formation of judicial commission, a deputy attorney general apprised the court that the provincial government, through a letter, had informed the interior ministry that it did not recommend formation of a judicial commission for the time being. The provincial government was awaiting the JIT report, he added.

Subsequently, the bench ordered sessions judge Sahiwal to depute a judicial magistrate for a judicial inquiry into the incident.

Khalil, his wife Nabila, their teenage daughter Areeba, and friend Zeeshan Javed were killed after CTD officials opened fire on their car in Sahiwal on January 19. The Punjab government formed an investigation team to probe the case; however, the families of the deceased demanded formation of a judicial commission to investigate the matter.

 APP

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