Friday April 12, 2024

Rana Maqbool’s plea seeking protection in Zardari murder attempt case disposed of

By Jamal Khurshid
February 11, 2024

The Sindh High Court (SHC) has disposed of a petition filed by former Sindh inspector general of police (IGP) Rana Maqbool Ahmed, who later also became a senator of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, seeking protection and protective bail in a case pertaining to attempt of murder on Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians (PPPP) Chairman and former president Asif Ali Zardari.

The Sindh High Court building. — SHC website
The Sindh High Court building. — SHC website

The SHC recently disposed of the petition when it was informed by Ahmed’s counsel that the petitioner had passed away.

The former IGP and senator, who also served as the secretary to the prosecution service of Punjab, had been named as a co-accused in the case of murder attempt on Zardari while the former president had been incarcerated.

The case against Ahmed, former senator Saifur Rehman nd his brother Mujeebur Rehman, former DIG Farooq Amin Qureshi and jailer Najaf Mirza was reinitiated following an order of the SHC that set aside the acquittal order of the aforementioned persons on an application of Zardari.

The PPPP president had challenged the acquittal order and prayed the court to set aside the trial court order and conduct trial against the accused who attempted to kill him during his incarceration in May 1999.

The high court was informed by the Ahmed’s counsel that the petitioner of the case had passed away in September last year and did not press the petition. A division bench of the high court headed by Justice Naimatullah Phulpoto granting request disposed of the petition of the former IGP as not pressed.

The SHC also directed its office to separate the case from the application of another co-accused Mirza and ordered to fix the case as per the roster.

Ahmed had in 2010 expressed serious apprehension of his life in case of his arrival in Sindh to attend the court proceedings as the complainant of the case was no other but then president Zardari and his life would be in jeopardy at hands of instigated and provoked Peoples Party activists. He also requested the court to allow him to defend the trial through his counsel.

The petitioner’s counsel had submitted that the petition was maintainable as the superior courts in Benazir Bhutto and other cases had allowed the counsel to defend the person in his absence and charge could be framed in the absence of the accused by the trial court.

He prayed court that the life of the petitioner be protected and secured from provoked activists of the PPP and Muttahida Qaumi Movement or from hidden hands controlled by the presidency and home ministry and grant him protective bail enabling him to defend his case through his counsel.