Lahore: Case against DSP, others: Probe report declares encounter fake
LAHORE: A police probe into an alleged encounter resulting in the killing of a 23-year-old youth found that the shootout was fake, but it confirmed that the deceased committed a robbery along with his two accomplices.
A murder case has been ordered against the Nishtar Colony circle DSP, a sub-inspector and two constables for killing Shahbaz Butt of Shadbagh in a fake encounter. The inquiry did not find any criminal record of Shahbaz.
Deputy Inspector General of Police Maj Mubashirullah (retired), who was the inquiry officer, told a news conference held at the IG’s Office on Monday that the probe found the incident of shop robbery to be genuine, but the claims regarding motorcycle snatching and an encounter were dubious and maneuvered.
He said it was revealed through statements of witnesses, two robbery victims and inspection of the crime scene that two robbers entered Makka Medical Store in Yohanaabad and looted Rs30,000 in cash.
As the shop owner managed to capture one of the robbers, the outlaw resorted to aerial firing to frighten him. The firing alerted the owner’s brother who also came inside the shop. The second robber fired a bullet at the owner’s brother, leaving him injured as the bullet hit his leg.
As the shop owner overpowered the first robber, the second managed to escape along with their third accomplice. The first robber was then handed over to two policemen who had rushed to the spot after hearing the gunshots.
After sometime, SI Muhammad Riaz of Nishtar Colony police also reached the spot along with constables Abdul Qadir and Muhammad Asif and took the robber, identified as Shahbaz, into custody.
The DIG then quoting the police version of the happenings said they were taking Shahbaz to the police station when a citizen signalled their vehicle to stop one street away from the destination and complained that his bike was snatched by two robbers.
He said the police claimed that they rushed to the crime scene as identified by the complainant and as they had travelled some five kilometre they were shot at. The police claimed to have retaliated the fire.
Meanwhile, Shahbaz tried to escape taking benefit of the crossfire and was hit by the bullets fired by his own accomplices, the police claimed.
The DIG said the report had been submitted to the IG with recommendation of registration of an FIR against DSP Riasat Ali Javed, SI Riaz and constables Qadir and Asif.
He said so far there was no solid evidence of involvement of Nishtar Colony SHO Naveed Iqbal, Investigation In-Charge Zulfikar Ali and constables Muhammad Ashraf, Abdur Rehman, Abdur Rauf and Muhammad Nawaz in the incident. If the investigators found such evidence, these police officials would also be included in the investigation, the DIG added.
He said it was also recommended that some officers not belonging to the Lahore police should investigate the incident. Sources privy to the investigation told Dawn the accused DSP and three policemen had been taken in protective custody, but they would be formally arrested if allegations against them proved to be true in the investigation.
They said Shahbaz’s missing accomplices Aamir Jameel, Sufyan and Razzaq were still at large.
Meanwhile, a case under Sections 302 and 109 of the Pakistan Penal Code was registered against the four accused policemen on the complaint of Shahbaz’s father Jehangir Butt in the evening. The accused had also been suspended from service.