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December 20, 2020

Kidnapping, murder of Faisalabad lawyer: Police report holds Sukkur SSP responsible

December 20, 2020

KARACHI: The Sindh Police in its inquiry report have confirmed the ‘direct involvement of SSP Sukkur Irfan Samon in kidnapping and murder of Faisalabad lawyer and recommended a strict legal and departmental action against him.

The lawyer was killed in a Sukkur police private detention centre in August, 2020.

The inquiry was conducted by DIG Naeem Shaikh following which the Sindh Police served a show-cause notice on SSP Samon and submitted references for further action against him with Sindh Services and General Administration Department (S&GAD) and the federal government’s Establishment Division. DIG Naeem Shaikh submitted the inquiry report to IGP Sindh Mushtaq Mahar (copy of which is available with The News) declaring that the SSP Sukkur Samon misused authority conferred on him as a commander of the district police, to favour a party in a property dispute in which the life of a senior lawyer was lost.

Earlier, DIG Irfan Baloch was conducting the inquiry but following reservations of some officers of the Sukkur Police, the IGP assigned the inquiry to DIG Naeem Shaikh.

According to the inquiry report, the advocate from Faisalabad had a property dispute with his stepmother in Faisalabad and subsequently shifted to Sukkur. The lawyer soon became friends with an influential person of the district who had close relationship with SSP Irfan Samon and other police officials.

Using his police contacts, the influential person allegedly managed to get registered a fake case of jewelry theft against the lawyer at Police Station Pano Aqil Cantonment to pressurise him for settling the property dispute in favour of his step mother.

According to the inquiry report, SSP Sukkur Irfan Samon directed a team of Sukkur Police on August 17, 2019 which picked the lawyer from Faisalabad, Punjab and detained him illegally in a private torture cell in Pano Aqil. “The police inquiry report establishes that the lawyer subsequently died of torture in that private cell. The suspected police officers then dumped his body at Bhong, Sadiqabad, the bordering city of Punjab.

DIG Naeem Shaikh established through the report that the all the actions, including “arresting lawyer from Faisalabad, his illegal detention, torturing him to death, and throwing away his body outside the provincial boundary of Sindh were in knowledge of SSP Irfan Samon and DSP Masood Mahar who are directly or indirectly responsible for the entire gruesome episode.” The police report recommended a strict action against the responsible persons.

Earlier, two separate FIRs of the crime were registered -- the first on August 19, 2020, at Police Station Madina Town Faisalabad, on the complaint of lawyer’s wife against Sukkur Police’ DSP Masood Rasool Mahar and other officials of Sindh Police, his stepmother, and two sisters. While a second case was registered on August 23, 2020, at Police Station Pano-Aqil Cantonment on the compliant of SHO Allah Wadhayo Pitafi against ex-SHO of the Police Station Pano Aqil Cantonment, Inspector Aqil Bashir Bhayo, two ASIs Gul Hassan Seelro and Ghulam Mustafa Mirani, and constables Yaqoob, Naseer, Dargah Dino.

The junior officers, including Inspector Bashir Bhayo, two ASIs Gul Hassan Seelro and Ghulam Mustafa Mirani; and Police constables Yaqoob, Naseer, Dargah Dino were in custody of Sukkur Police and recently their bail applications were rejected by Sessions Court, Sukkur.

DIG Naeem Shaikh “recommended strict legal and departmental action against SSP Irfan Samon who was allegedly found responsible for all the actions besides supervising illegalities committed by his subordinates.”

Describing the roles of DSP Masood Mahar, DSP Pano Aqil Liaqat Ali Abbasi, and DSP Saeed Shaikh, the inquiry report recommended strict departmental action against them for their role, poor supervision and inefficiency to hold such a responsible position.

The Inquiry report concluded holding impartial investigations by Sindh and Punjab Police by collecting proper evidence and prosecuting the case jointly. The inquiry report also quoted and attached the news story of ‘The News’ published on September 8, 2020 captioned as “Property dispute: How a Faisalabad lawyer kidnapped, killed by Sukkur Police” in the official report.