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Rao Anwar sent on judicial remand until May 2 in Naqeebullah killing case

Rao Anwar sent on judicial remand until May 2 in Naqeebullah killing case

An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in Karachi on Saturday sent former senior superintendent of police Rao Anwar to prison on juidical remand until May 2 in one of the cases regarding the extrajudicial killing of Naqeebullah Mehsud.

The former SSP and 11 of his detained subordinates and 14 absconding ones are accused of abducting Naseemullah, also known as Naqeebullah Mehsud, for ransom and killing him, along with three other detainees, in a staged encounter in Malir on January 13. The cops had dubbed it an encounter against militants.

The investigating officer of the case requested the court to send Anwar on judicial remand, and sought a week's time to submit the final challan of the case.

He informed the court that a new joint investigation team (JIT) has been formed to investigate Anwar over the killing. The challan will be submitted on the JIT's recommendation.

The administrative judge of ATC subsequently sent Anwar and another suspect, Shakeel, to jail on judicial remand until May 2. Meanwhile, the judicial remand of ten suspects including DSP Qamar Ahmed Shaikh was extended until an unspecified date.

It may be recalled that 11 police officials had already been arrested in the case before Anwar was taken into custody after he surrendered before the Supreme Court in Islamabad on March 21. Around 15 police officers have been declared as absconders in the case.

According to the IO’s report submitted before an ATC, policemen in plainclothes picked Naqeebullah Mehsud, along with two other persons and took them to Sachal police post where the two others were separated from Mehsud. When one of the witnesses asked the policemen about their abduction, a policeman replied that they were being taken to see Rao Anwar and then they (captives) would make their way to heaven.

Later, the two witnesses who were released by the police told the investigators that they were taken to an unknown location where they also saw Mehsud and when one of them inquired from Mehsud he said that police were demanding Rs1 million against his release, but he could not arrange even Rs50,000.

The report further stated the witness after being released came to know through media that Rao Anwar and his associates had allegedly killed Mehsud and three others in a staged encounter in a Shah Latif Town area on Jan 13 and dubbed them as militants.

Mehsud's father lodged a case on Jan 23 against Rao Anwar and others on the basis of findings of a three-member inquiry committee, which said that prima facie the encounter was coordinated, fake and staged.

The SC took notice of the killing after the incident sparked outrage at social media and protests by political and religious parties and rights organisations. The police investigators claimed that Rao Anwar played a central role in the case.

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