Karachi: Murder attempt on Zardari
KARACHI: District and Sessions Judge (South) Nizar Ahmed Khawaja admitted pre–arrest bail application of former superintendent central prison Najaf Mirza in the murder attempt on Asif Ali Zardari case. Mirza personally appeared in the court and submitted the application through his counsel on Monday. Granting the bail plea, the court deferred the hearing till Tuesday. Mirza, along with other police officials, was declared a proclaimed offender and warrants were issued against all five accused in the case.
The court had earlier issued a proclamation order against former Ehtisab Bureau Chairman Saifur Rehman, his brother Mujibur Rehman, former Sindh police chief Rana Maqbool, ex-DIG Farooq Amin Qureshi and former superintendent of Karachi Central Prison Najaf Mirza. The court had also ordered attachment of moveable and immoveable properties of all the accused.
Investigation Officer DSP Sultan submitted a report in the court, stating that all the accused have no property, and were living in rented houses or government residences, and therefore the attachment of their moveable and immoveable property was immaterial.
According to the prosecution, the respondents were accused by Mr Zardari of unlawfully obtaining his physical custody from an anti-terrorism court on the night between May 15 and May 16, 1999, taking him to the CIA Centre and torturing him to extract incriminatory statements. His tongue was slashed and he bled profusely, but the police refused to register an FIR against then-IG and covered up the incident as an attempt to commit suicide by the complainant.
Mr Zardari then approached the high court.
A SHC division bench comprising Justice Abdul Hameed Dogar and Justice Hamid Ali Mirza held the ATC’s remand order unlawful and ordered a judicial inquiry into the incident. An inquiry by former Malir district and sessions judge Salman Ansari found that the wounds inside Mr Zardari’s mouth and other parts of his body could not be self-inflicted.
An FIR was registered in February 2005 and investigation was assigned to an Artillery Maidan inspector, however, the former chief minister transferred the investigation to DSP Chaudhry Aslam who submitted his report to the seventh additional district and sessions judge (south) under Section 173 of the Criminal Procedure Code. Ch. Aslam recommended that the case be placed in “C” class and proceedings be quashed owing to absence of evidence and corroboration of the complainant’s version.
The ADJ disposed of the case as prayed and acquitted all the accused on June 30, 2006. Later, Mr Zardari moved a revision application against the ADJ’s order in the SHC. On May 27, the SHC reopened the case and directed the trial court to initiate proceedings of the attempt to murder case.