PM has directed Punjab govt to file appeal on Sahiwal incident verdict: Dr Firdous

Dunya News

PM directs Punjab govt to file appeal on Sahiwal incident verdict: Dr Firdous

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Information and Broadcasting Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan on Friday said that PM Imran Khan has directed the Punjab government to file an appeal on Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) verdict regarding Sahiwal encounter case.

In a tweet, the special assistant said that the premier has also ordered the provincial government to investigate the weaknesses and flaws of prosecution in leading the case.

Entire nation had watched the video of Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) officers opening fire at the passengers. The government of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is committed to ensure justice to the children, who lost their parents in this shooting mishap, she asserted. 

ATC acquits accused CTD personnel in Sahiwal encounter case

Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) had ordered to acquit six accused personnel of CTD due to lack of evidence. These accused included Safdar Hussain, Ahsan Khan, Ramzan, Saifullah, Husnain and Nasir.

In January 2019, four persons including two women were shot dead in Qadirabad area by the CTD officers, claiming to have killed four ‘terrorists’ in an intelligence based operation (IBO). Minor boy Umair, who sustained severe wounds in the incident, and his two sisters Muneeba and Hadia were also present in the car.

CTD had told that the passengers of the car opened fire on officers, who were trying to intercept the vehicle and a motorcycle on GT Road.

The slain including Zeeshan and Khaleel were allegedly linked to a group involved in the abduction of former Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani’s son and an American citizen, CTD told.

Also Read: Sahiwal incident video refutes CTD claims of encounter with terrorists

On the other hand, eyewitnesses denied CTD’s statements and said that the people in the car did not fire at officials. “There were no weapons found with the bodies,” they said.

They further told that the children traveling in the car claimed that the police had killed their parents. “Following the firing incident, the security personnel left the kids at the petrol station where they spoke to us. A few minutes later, CTD officials returned and took the children with them to an undisclosed location,” the eyewitnesses added.

Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief Minister of Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar immediately took notice of the mishap after which, Inspector General Amjad Javed Saleemi formed Joint Investigation Team (JIT) comprising Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Intelligence Bureau (IB) and Military Intelligence (MI) officers that declared law-enforcement agency members responsible for the incident.

Also Read: Talks between protesters, authorities fail in Sahiwal

Later, the officials involved in the encounter were arrested on the directions of CM Buzdar and an FIR was lodged on behalf of Khaleel’s brother Jaleel against 16 people under section 302 (premeditated murder) of the Pakistan Penal Code and Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) 1997.

Furthermore, Lahore High Court (LHC) had formed bench and summoned IG Punjab for investigation in the shooting incident. The top judge expressed resentment and inquired who gave authority to police to directly open fire on anyone.

The court also ordered a judicial inquiry into the alleged encounter in Sahiwal and directed session judge to complete the probe as soon as possible.