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September 29, 2017

‘Two missing men killed in police encounters’


September 29, 2017

Three missing persons who were allegedly picked up by law enforcement agencies were either killed in police encounters or found dead, the Sindh High Court (SHC) was informed on Thursday.

Investigation officers informed the court that Yousuf Quddusi and Abdul Jabbar were killed in separate police encounters. Petitioners Shabana and Abdul Sattar Leghari had challenged Quddusi and Jabbar’s illegal detentions by law enforcement agencies.

The petitioners said law enforcers had picked up Quddusi and Jabbar from the Orangi and Baldia Town areas in separate raids on April 8, 2016 and July 11, 2017 respectively.

The officers told the court that Quddusi was killed in a police encounter in the Manghopir area this February 24 and Jabbar was killed in another police encounter by the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) on August 15. Jabbar’s family, however, claimed that he was killed in a fake police encounter.

The SHC’s division bench headed by Justice Naimatullah Phulpoto directed the CTD SSP to hold an enquiry into Jabbar’s police encounter and submit its report on the next date of hearing. The court also summoned the Orangi Town police’s IO with the investigation report.

In the detention case of Nadeem Khan, alias Talha, the Iqbal Market SHO told the bench that the man’s body was found in the Iqbal Market police precincts on February 26.

The detainee’s brother Shahid Khan said Nadeem was picked up by the Rangers on December 12, 2016 and his whereabouts had remained unknown since then.

The SHC summoned the IO with the investigation report on the next date of hearing. The court also directed the federal and provincial law officers to file comments on petitions against law enforcement agencies detaining citizens.

Petitioners Ziauddin, Syeda Tamseel Fatima Rizvi, Farzana, Maira, Hussan Bano, Gauhar Rehman, Abdul Ghaffar and Fauzia Nadeem said law enforcers had picked up Shoaib Ahmed, Mohammad Arif, Shaheen Jan, Rashid Baloch, Mohammad Hanif, Moizuddin, Naveed Iqbal, Mohammad Shariq and Nadeem Akhtar from the North Karachi, Arambagh, Lyari, SITE and Korangi areas.

They told the bench that the police were disclosing neither their whereabouts nor the details of the cases against them. They asked the SHC to tell the law enforcers to bring the detainees in court or release them if not required in any cases.

Gutka and mainpuri

The SHC directed the provincial police chief to submit a report on action being taken against the people involved in the manufacture and sale of gutka and mainpuri in the city.

The court was hearing Rashid Khan’s petition seeking a ban on the manufacture and sale of gutka (a stimulant made from crushed areca nut, catechu, paraffin wax and staked lime) and mainpuri (a mix of tobacco and crushed areca nut).

The petitioner had submitted that the health of a large number of citizens had been gravely endangered because of the consumption of substandard gutka and mainpuri despite the imposition of a ban by the provincial government.

He said the health department also mentioned in its comments that the consumption of gutka and mainpuri could cause mouth cancer, but the manufacture and sale of such hazardous products continued because of the food department’s negligence and police patronage.

The court had ordered the police chief and other relevant authorities to ensure effective enforcement of restrictions imposed on the preparation, manufacture and sale of gutka and mainpuri throughout the province.

Filing comments on the petition, the police chief said that no separate law was in place to curb the manufacture and sale of gutka, while violators of the relevant laws could only be punished for up to six months in prison.

He said 212 people were arrested in 147 cases registered in Karachi against manufacturers and sellers of gutka and mainpuri, adding that all the SSPs had been directed to take strict action against the manufacture and sale of gutka and mainpuri in their respective jurisdictions.

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