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ATC turned down PAT request for trial of Nawaz Sharif

08 February, 2017

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LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Tuesday turned down Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) request seeking trial of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, Law Minister Rana Sanaullah and eight other MNAs allegedly responsible for the killing of 14 people in Model Town more than two years ago.

Judge Ch Muhammad Azam held that the court could not try anyone without solid evidence. The court rejected the plea seeking trial of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Federal Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafiq, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, MNA Hamza Shahbaz, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan, former information minister Pervaiz Rashid, State Minister Abid Sher Ali, then personal secretary to chief minister Syed Tauqir Shah, Home Minister Azam Suleman, and then Lahore commissioner Rashid Mahmood Langrial.

The ATC on Tuesday partially allowed the private complaint moved by Minhajul Quran Secretariat over the Model Town incident in which 14 people lost their lives and 100 others got severely injured.

The court only allowed trial of Punjab Police Inspector General Mushtaq Ahmad Sukhera, then SSP (Operations) Rana Abdul Jabbar and 123 other officials. The judge directed the accused persons to personally appeal on February 17 and deposit surety bonds of Rs 500,000 each.

Jawad Hamid, the administration director of Minhajul Quran, had filed this private complaint in March 2016 regarding the tragedy occurred on January 17, 2014. He had alleged that workers of PAT and Minhajul Quran were killed at the behest of the prime minister and the Punjab chief minister with the connivance of police and city administration.

He further alleged that on June 15, 2014, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leadership had asked them to restrain party head Prof Dr Tahirul Qadri from coming to Pakistan for a meeting scheduled to be held in Model Town.

He also alleged that the ruling party's top persons had also hurled threats of dire consequences in case of Dr Qadri's arrival.

He alleged that on June 16, 2014, a meeting was held at the Punjab Civil Secretariat where the conspiracy was hatched to attack the Model Town residence of Dr Qadri over the issue of barriers put on the roads around the Minhajul Quran Secretariat.

He alleged that on the government behest the police opened fire on peaceful people, killing 14 and injuring more than 100, on the plea of removing the barriers. He said that after the tragedy, the government nominated a joint investigation team (JIT) which declared Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, Law Minister Rana Sanaullah and others innocent by throwing away solid evidence.

He requested the court to initiate proceedings against all those persons, convict and then sentence them for killing 14 workers and leaving 100 others injured.

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