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September 28, 2020

Influential suspects in Karachi’s high-profile cases have rendered police useless


September 28, 2020

Four men — each one belonging to an influential family — have been giving police officials a tough time in solving the Dr Maha Shah death and Clifton gang rape cases by constantly slipping through the investigators’ fingers.

Karachi recently witnessed two major incidents, both of which occurred in upmarket neighbourhoods of the city, but the suspects in these high-profile cases continue to be at large.

Junaid Khan and Waqas Hasan are wanted in connection with the Dr Maha Shah death case, while two other men, including the son of a late parliamentarian, are wanted in connection with the Clifton gang rape case.

Interestingly, Khan and Hasan had been arrested, but they managed to escape from police custody at the city courts, while the Clifton gang rape suspects are yet to be arrested, even though they have been identified.

Both incidents occurred in upmarket neighbourhoods — Dr Maha Shah died in DHA and the gang rape was committed in Clifton — which fall under District South of the city. The son of a late parliamentarian belonging to Jacobabad and his accomplice are allegedly involved in kidnapping and gang raping a 22-year-old woman on the night of September 21.

After discovering the identities of the two men, police officials raided their houses multiple times, but every time both the suspects managed to evade arrest.

On September 24, police had conducted a raid in Sukkur after learning of their possible presence, but found neither man. Officials said they had traced the prime suspect to Sukkur, but he then switched off his mobile phone, adding that they were also trying to locate the suspects through human intelligence.

On September 23, police had established the suspects’ identities and conducted a raid at a DHA apartment, but found neither of them. Officials had also raided the houses of the suspects’ relatives, but could not catch the suspects.

Moreover, the footage obtained by police officials from the CCTV cameras installed in the area where the woman was allegedly thrown out of a vehicle does not corroborate her statement.

A footage watched by this correspondent shows the woman stepping out of an SUV carrying a shopping bag. In the video clip she appears to be calm and can be seen quickly walking away.

In the Dr Maha Shah death case, Khan and Hasan had escaped from the city courts on September 21 after their application for interim bail was rejected. The two men fled in a rickshaw while the investigating officer could do nothing to stop them, following which he was suspended.

Dr Maha’s father Syed Asif Ali Shah fears that the suspects might leave the country. “If they haven’t done anything wrong, why did they escape? We’re satisfied with the police investigation, but fear that the suspects might escape abroad.”

The father had accused the two men of getting his daughter addicted to drugs. He said they would easily escape from the country just like they had managed to escape from the court.

A police official told The News that they are looking for all the four suspects, and that each of them will be arrested soon because they are still in the country and have not flown abroad.