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Court extends remand of journalist Wali Khan Babar’s ‘killer’

Karachi

July 1, 2020

The anti-terrorism courts’ administrative judge on Tuesday extended the police remand of a man accused of Geo News reporter Wali Khan Babar’s murder until July 4 for the completion of the interrogation.

Karachi police chief AIG Ghulam Nabi Memon had in mid of June, announced the arrest of Kamran alias Zeeshan alias Shani, who had been evading the law for almost 10 years.

Babar, aged 28, was shot dead in Liaquatabad while driving home from office in the jurisdiction of the Super Market police station on January 13, 2011. The murder case was lodged on the same day.

On March 1, 2014, the Kandhkot anti-terrorism court had awarded the death sentence to Kamran and Faisal Mehmood alias Mota in absentia, while four of others had been given life imprisonment for the journalist’s murder.

Memon said that Kamran along with his accomplices, all allegedly belonging to the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, carried out Babar’s cold blooded murder. He added that the convict was arrested in a joint operation conducted by the Special Investigation Unit and a federal intelligence agency.

He said the convict had remained underground for five years when police, intelligence agencies and the witnesses had been actively pursuing him. He eventually settled down in Gulshan-e-Maymar, with his family in the comfort that the chase had gone cold.

The police official said that the case gained a lot of attention, as Babar was a crime reporter of Geo News and quite active in the field. Initially, there were eight men accused of Babar’s murder and among them one was identified as Liaquat Ali, who was killed in an encounter.

Memon said that several witnesses were murdered, including Rajab Bengali, who was killed in 2011. Another star witness Haider Ali, on whose testimony the conviction took place, was similarly killed in 2012. Advocate Naimat Ali Randhawa was also murdered in September 2013 while he was pleading the case as a special public prosecutor.

According to the confession of Zeeshan, the police chief, said the MQM-London South Africa was involved in the journalist’s murder. “Wali Babar was killed because he was considered close to the Awami National Party (ANP) and would report anti-Altaf Hussain stories,” he claimed.

The SIU presented Kamran in a case pertaining to the possession of illicit weapons that were found on him at the time of his arrest. According to the police, he will be presented before the relevant court in the journalist’s murder case once the investigation is complete.