Order reserved on plea for transfer of Abidi murder case to sessions court.

Byline: Naeem Sahoutara

KARACHI -- An antiterrorism court has reserved its order on an application seeking transfer of the Ali Raza Abidi murder case to a sessions court for trial.

Former Muttahida Qaumi Movement lawmaker Abidi, was assassinated by armed motorcyclists near his residence in Defence Housing Authority on Dec 25, 2018.

The Counter-Terrorism Department booked and arrested four suspects Mohammad Farooq, Abdul Haseeb, Mohammad Ghazali and Abu Bakar in the murder case. Their four absconding accomplices are Bilal, Hasnain, Faizan and Ghulam Mustafa.

The CTD claimed that the suspects belonged to criminals gangs operating in Lyari.

Suspect Abu Bakar moved an application, through his counsel Rizwana Javed, under Section 23 (power to transfer cases to regular courts) of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997, stating that the incident of the murder did not come within the ambit of Section 7 (acts of terrorism) of the ATA since it did not create any terror or panic at large in the society.

The applicant stated the unfortunate incident was an act of murder and punishable under the provisions of the Pakistan Penal Code.

One of the four 'Lyari gangsters' held in connection with the MQM leader's assassination seeks post-arrest bail

The court was pleaded to transfer the case to a sessions' court for proceeding with the trial in accordance with the law and in the interest of justice.

The counsel for suspect Haseeb, Ammad Ghaffar, also moved an application seeking post-arrest bail for his client stating that although no specific role was assigned to him in the FIR, he had been detained in prison despite the matter required further inquiry.

The court was pleaded to grant him post-arrest bail in the present case.

On the other hand, prosecutor Shoaib Safadar Ghuman and the complainant's counsel Nasir opposed the case transfer application, arguing that the act of the victim's murder caused panic and terror in the minds of the general people, thus in the society.

They submitted that the prosecution had enough material available to establish the role of the detained suspects as well as their absconding accomplices in the commission of the alleged offence.

The prosecutor as well as the complainant's counsel also opposed the bail application of suspect Haseeb stating that his role had been assigned in the interim charge sheet submitted by the investigating officer of the case.

After hearing arguments from the counsel, the ATC-XI...

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