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Karachi

January 28, 2018

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Naqeebullah was innocent: inquiry report to SC

KARACHI: The inquiry committee investigating Naqeebullah Mehsud murder case submitted an initial rep...

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Call data places Rao Anwar, team at ‘encounter’ site

Call data places Rao Anwar, team at ‘encounter’ site

Former Malir SSP Rao Anwar and his team was at the site or in the vicinity of the site where the ‘encounter’ took place during which Naqeebullah Mehsud was shot dead, according to the analysis of call data records, states an inquiry report submitted to the Supreme Court.

Filing the report on Saturday at the top court’s Karachi registry, the high-level probe team headed by Counter-Terrorism Department Additional Inspector General Sanaullah Abbasi said that the alleged shoot-out on January 13 in Shah Latif Town and resulted in the death of Naseemullah, also known as Naqeebullah, was prima facie a fake or staged encounter.

According to the report, Naqeeb’s friend Hazrat Ali informed the probe team that he along with Naqeeb and Qasim were picked up by police personnel from a tea shop on Abul Hasan Ispahani Road on January 3 and taken to Sachal police station.

Ali further told the team that the three men were illegally kept in police confinement for three days and tortured. He added that he and Qasim were released with threats to remain silent about what had happened to them.

The witness further told the probe team that later they came to know through media reports that SSP Rao Anwar had killed Naqeeb in a fake encounter. In the report, the committee states that as per the FIR of the alleged police encounter, SIP Amanullah Marwat, ASI Gada Hussain, HC Sadaqat Ali Shah, HC Mohsin Abbas, PC Raja Shamim and driver Rana Riaz were present at place of incident/encounter. However, an analysis of the call data record indicates that the then SSP Rao Anwar and members of his close team including SIP Amanullah Marwat, SIP Shoaib, SIP Mohammad Anwar, ASI Khair Mohammad, ASI Gada Hussain, HC Faisal Mehmood, HC Mohsin Abbas and PC Raja Shamim were present on the scene of incident or its vicinity at the time of the said encounter.

The inquiry report further states Rao Anwar persistently avoided the inquiry proceedings after his first brief attendance before the inquiry committee, yet he constantly appeared in media interviews and was in touch with media persons. It adds that the former SSP showed extreme indiscipline and disobeyed the lawful command and constantly tried to hamper and obstruct the process of justice.

According to the report, Rao Anwar, who has previously travelled to Dubai from Karachi airport 74 times, tried to leave for Dubai on January 23 from Islamabad airport on forged documents to avoid the legal process even though the chief minister and home minister have denied granting ex-Pakistan leave to him. The policeman was subsequently off-loaded by FIA staff because of the lack of a valid departmental NOC.

The report states that contrary to Rao’s persistent claims in media and statement before the committee about Naqeeb, they found no involvement of the deceased in any terrorist activity and that Naqeeb’s social media profile shows him as a liberal and fun-loving young man with a penchant for modelling.

The probe team said that an FIR has been registered against Rao Anwar and his team and recommended that an investigation be carried out by another team headed by an officer of the rank of AIG. It also recommended that witnesses should be provided protection under the Sindh Witness Protection Act 2013.

The committee also observed that Rao Anwar remained posted in Malir district for nearly seven years in different stints and witnesses were fearful of their security and were thus afraid to cooperate during inquiries or investigations against police. According to report submitted to the Supreme Court, as many as 745 police encounters were conducted during the seven-year tenure of Rao in Malir district in which 444 accused were killed and 891 were arrested.

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