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Friday June 14, 2024

Former MQM-L activist acquitted by ATC in Haqiqi worker murder case

By Yousuf Katpar
June 02, 2023

An anti-terrorism court (ATC) has acquitted a former activist of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-London (MQM-L) over lack of evidence in a case pertaining to the murder of a Muhajir Qaumi Movement (MQM-Haqiqi) worker about 14 years ago. Waseem Javed, alias Waseem Boss, alias Tunda, who was said to have received training from Indian intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) in handling weapons and preparing and using explosive material, was charged with the murder of Syed Abrar Hussain Zaidi within the jurisdiction of the Nabi Bakhsh police on October 1, 2009.

The ATC-XVI judge, who conducted the trial in the judicial complex inside the central prison, pronounced his verdict after recording evidence and final arguments from both the sides. He observed that the prosecution had failed to prove its case against the accused and exonerated him of the charge. The judge also acquitted him in a separate case related to the possession of illicit arms for want of evidence. The jail authorities were told to release him forthwith if his custody was not required in any other case. According to the prosecution, the accused was apprehended during an intelligence-based operation jointly carried out by the Rangers and police in Liaquatabad in October 2022. During initial interrogation, it said, he had confessed to his involvement in extortion, murders, attempted murders and terrorism in the port city on directives from the top MQM leadership.

He was booked in the murder case after a pistol allegedly seized from his possession matched with spent bullet casings found at the crime scene, the prosecution said. The defence lawyer, however, contended that there was no sufficient evidence to link the accused with the murder, pleading with the judge to acquit him. An MQM activist, Saeed, alias Bharam, has already been awarded life imprisonment in the present case. Bharam himself had confessed to the investigators that he along with his companions killed Zaidi on directives from the top MQM leadership due to the political enmity between the two parties, the prosecution said.

Another MQM worker, Rasheed Ahmed, alias Doctor, was also arrested in the present case and stood trial but was later acquitted. An FIR was lodged at the Nabi Bux police station under the sections 302 (murder) and 34 (common intention) of the PPC read with Section 7 (punishment for acts of terrorism) of the ATA.