Police seek time to grill Uzair over killing of four ‘missing’ persons

KARACHI: Police have informed the Sindh High Court that Lyari ‘gangster’ Uzair Jan Baloch had allegedly killed four ‘missing’ persons and sought time to grill him and his accomplices to unearth the truth.

When a two-judge bench of the SHC headed by Justice Niamatullah Phulpoto took up a petition seeking the whereabouts of a head constable of the jail police and his three friends, who reportedly went missing in 2010 near the central prison, DIG (East) Amir Farooqui submitted a progress report.

The DIG, who was appointed an inquiry officer, in the report submitted that all the four missing persons had been killed by Uzair and his accomplices and he had confessed to that fact in his confessional statement recorded by a judicial magistrate.

It further said that as per a DSP, who is investigating the case, a hi-roof van, used in the kidnapping, was set on fire a couple of days after the incident in Liaquatabad during a strike called by the MQM and an FIR was registered at the Liaquatabad police station.

Two alleged accomplices of the Lyari ‘gangster’ are at large

The IO has also inquired about the role of Shahid Bikak, who was affiliated with the banned Lyari Aman Committee, the progress report said and added that during a JIT session Waseem Dada, a cook of Uzair Baloch, disclosed that the four missing persons with Bikak came to the residence of Uzair in 2010 and he heard that two of them told Uzair that they would not give the ownership documents of their plot to Bikak.

Uzair asked Bikak to kill them if they did not agree to hand over the documents, the report quoted Uzair’s cook as saying.

The progress report further said that reinvestigation of Uzair, his cook and Bikak was necessary to unearth the truth, adding that the alleged gangster was in the custody of military authorities and Waseem after being acquitted in all the cases went underground while Bikak was also at large.

The recovery of their bodies was improbable without investigating the accused persons and until the inquiry officer or investigating officer are given access to Uzair Baloch, this inquiry would remain incomplete, the report said.

The bench said that since the police sought time to investigate Uzair the matter was adjourned till May 2.

The petition was filed in 2011 regarding the alleged disappearance of Lala Amin, a head constable of the jail police, Ghazi Khan, Sher Afzal and Shiraz Khan from the jurisdiction of the New Town police station in 2010.

Phullan Khatoon, the mother of Ghazi Khan, had filed a petition and alleged that her son and his friends had been picked up by the Rangers on August 1, 2010 and appealed for their recovery.

Earlier, through a report, police submitted that former Rangers inspector Sher Afsar and former sub-inspector Riaz Taman were also being prosecuted before an antiterrorism court for kidnapping the detainees for ransom.

Case against Fazlullah Pechuho

A complainant on Thursday filed a petition before the Supreme Court seeking transfer of a graft case against former education secretary Fazlullah Pechuho from an anti-corruption court in Karachi to Sukkur.

The then education secretary Pechuho, a brother-in-law of former president and Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari, in connivance with education department section officer Abdul Jabbar and junior clerk Iftikhar Hussain have been charged with demanding a bribe from a suspended schoolteacher for his restoration in August 2014.

The court had lodged a direct complaint in February 2016 against the then education secretary and two officials after Mohammad Mithal moved the court to lodge a direct complaint against the respondents after the Anti-Corruption Establishment did not entertain his application.

The petitioner alleged that he was facing death threats as the former secretary was very influential, and also maintained that he had no faith in the trial court and sought transfer of the case to an anti-corruption court in Sukkur.

Published in Dawn, April 5th, 2019