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Two men jailed for 11 years in police encounter, illegal arms case

By Our Correspondent
September 19, 2023

An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Monday awarded 11-year imprisonment each to two men in cases pertaining to encounter with police and possession of illicit arms.

Muhammad Zubair and Muhammad Shahbaz were found guilty of firing at police with the intention to kill, carrying unlicensed pistols and causing terrorism in the Defence area in June last year.

The ATC-XX judge, who pronounced his order after recording evidence and final arguments from both sides, observed that the prosecution had successfully proved its cases against the accused persons without any shadow of reasonable doubt as the testimonies of prosecution witnesses were trustworthy and inspired confidence.

He awarded a collective sentence of 11-year imprisonment to the two men each and also ordered them to pay a fine of Rs40,000 each or undergo an additional nine-month imprisonment.

The judge extended the benefit of the Section 382-B of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) to the convicts, meaning that the period of their detention since their arrest would be deducted from their prison term.

State prosecutor Iqbal Meo argued that on June 17, 2022, a police party on a routine patrol spotted two suspected criminals on a motorcycle near a graveyard in Defence’s Phase-VII and signalled them to stop but instead of complying, they accelerated in a bid to escape. When the personnel chased them, the pillion rider opened fire, he said, adding that in police’s retaliation, both the men sustained injuries and fell to the ground.

The accused were subsequently taken into custody and two 30-bore pistols were seized from them. Separate cases were lodged against them the sections 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 324 (attempted murder), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of fifty rupees) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and the Section 23(I)A of the Sindh Arms Act read with the Section 7 (punishment for acts of terrorism) of the Anti-Terrorism Act at the Defence police station on behalf of the state.