Karachi: Groom’s father acquitted in couple murder case
KARACHI: The additional district and sessions judge-V, Central, Tasneem Sultana, on Tuesday acquitted the father of the deceased groom in the double murder case of a newly-wed couple since both parties jointly filed a compromise application in the court.
The prosecution said that Hafiz Shaikh Mohammad Azeem and his bride, Beenish, were found dead in mysterious circumstances the next morning of their wedding night in their North Nazimabad apartment in the Taimuria police limits on Aug 11, 2007.
The investigation officer of the New Karachi Industrial Area police station, Khalid Khan, had nominated the deceased groom’s father, Shaikh Abdul Majeed, as the main accused in the case. Both parties, however, reached an out-of-court settlement and filed a compromise application on May 21 in the trial court under Section 345(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code, which says that the offences punishable under Sections of the Pakistan Penal Code specified in the table (which includes Qatl-i-Amd registered under Section 302), with the permission of the court before which any prosecution for such offence is pending, be compounded by the heirs of the victims.
The application says the legal heirs of Shaikh Mohammad Azeem and Beenish have forgiven the accused. On Jan 11, 2008, the court had indicted Shaikh Abdul Majeed on charges of killing the couple. The accused had pleaded not guilty and opted to contest the case.
Earlier, on Oct 27, 2007, the investigation officer had submitted an interim charge-sheet to the judicial magistrate-12 (Central), Abdul Zahoor Chandio, in which he nominated Shaikh Abdul Majeed, as the main accused in the case.
Referring to Mr Majeed’s interview on a TV channel, the IO said in the charge-sheet that Mr Majeed had himself admitted his presence up to 5am in the couple’s room, and added that Beenish was also murdered within two to three minutes between 4am and 5am by breaking her jaws and covering her nose and mouth with a pillow.
He stated that the accused had given poison to the couple in sweetmeat and when the woman lost her consciousness, he killed her by putting a pillow on her face.
On Nov 24, the court of judicial magistrate-12 (Central) had directed the SSP of investigation (Central) to reinvestigate the case and submit a final charge-sheet till Nov 30. Earlier, the court had also issued many notices to the IO to submit a final charge-sheet of the case. However, the police failed to comply with the court’s orders.
On Dec 1, the court considered the interim charge-sheet submitted by the investigation officer on Oct 27 as the final one and sent the case to the court of district and sessions judge, Central, for further trial.
Earlier, on Sept 20, Mr Majeed through his counsel had submitted an application to District and Sessions judge (Central), Abdul Maalik, under Section 22-A(6) (iii) (iv) of the CrPC requesting for the transfer of the case’s investigation to any other zone, citing his lack of confident in the investigation process.