KARACHI: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Saturday issued orders to put names of the accused in the murder case of Shahzeb Khan on the Exit Control List, as it accepted the appeal of civil society activists against the Sindh High Court’s (SHC) retrial order for hearing.
During the hearing of the appeal at the Supreme Court’s Karachi Registry, a three-member bench led by Chief Justice Saqib Nisar directed the government and interior ministry to place the names of Shahrukh Jatoi, Siraj Talpur, Sajjad Talpur and Ghulam Murtaza Lashari on the ECL.
The apex court also directed the interior ministry to issue relevant instructions to all airports in the country.
The court also issued bailable arrest warrants for the suspects and sent out notices to all the respondents in the case.
Members of civil society had approached the Supreme Court against the SHC ruling which set aside the death penalty for Shahrukh Jatoi and others convicted for the 2012 murder of Shahzeb and ordered their retrial by a sessions court.
Ten civil society activists – including Jibran Nasir, Jamshed Raza Mahmood, Afiya Shehrbano Zia, Naeem Sadiq, Nazim Fida Hussain Haji, Zulfiqar Shah, Aquila Ismail, Fahim Zaman Khan, and Naziha Syed Ali – had filed a criminal petition in the Supreme Court’s Karachi Registry challenging the SHC’s November 28, 2017 ruling which stated that the murder case does not fall within the jurisdiction of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.
In their petition, the civil society members stated that they have the legal standing to file the petition for leave to appeal as they are citizens of Karachi and reside in the same locality – Defence Housing Authority – where the murder took place.
They stated in the petition that the incident was not just of an individual nature, but carried serious repercussions for the society at large.
On December 23, 2017, Jatoi, the son of an influential feudal, and other defendants in the Shahzeb Khan murder case, were released from custody on bail after Shahzeb’s father submitted an affidavit in support of the defendant’s bail application.
An ATC in 2013 had awarded death sentences to Jatoi and Siraj Talpur for the murder of Shahzeb, while life sentences were awarded to Sajjad Ali Talpur and Ghulam Murtaza Lashari.