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Information about Uzair’s return to prison from military custody can’t be shared, ATC told

KARACHI: A special public prosecutor has informed an anti-terrorism court that no information can be shared with the trial court as to when the custody of Uzair Jan Baloch, the chief of the outlawed Peoples Amn Committee, will be shifted back to prison from the Army’s Corps-V, Karachi.

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The alleged gangster is nominated in nearly 62 criminal cases which are pending before Karachi’s different ATCs, which had been issuing his production orders as the trials were being delayed due to his non-production by prison authorities.

In response to the production orders, the prison authorities had disclosed that the undertrial prisoner could not be produced in courts since his custody had been shifted from the Karachi Central Prison to the Army’s Corps-V, Karachi.

The custody was handed over to the military officials on April 11, 2017in the presence of the Civil Judge and Judicial Magistrate-XI (South) for investigation in an explosives and arms case, the prison authorities added without mentioning as to when the UTP’s custody would be shifted back to prison.

The ATC-VI judge, who is conducting the trial of a case pertaining to kidnapping and murder of a policeman, last month took notice of the delays being caused in the trial by his non-production in court.

In a letter addressed to the provincial home department’s registrar, the court asked to explain as to when the custody of the UTP would be shifted back to prison.

“It is further directed that confirmation is required regarding the production of custody of accused Uzair Jan Baloch for hearing on each date before this court or may inform any time limit to this court regarding shifting the custody of the said accused from 5 Crops Karachi to Central Prison Karachi to avoid any further impediment,” it added.

The registrar was directed to submit a reply to the letter by the next date of hearing.

A special public prosecutor for the Rangers, Sajid Mehboob Sheikh, recently submitted before the ATC-V judge that the custody of the UTP had been ‘attached’ with an investigation in the custody of the military authorities.

Therefore, he further submitted that under the provisions of the Pakistan Military Law information could not be shared with the antiterrorism court as to when the custody of the ‘attached’ person will be shifted back to the prison.

Uzair, along with Habib Jan Baloch and other PAC leaders, is facing trial in connection with kidnapping and murder of a police constable in Kalri in 2012.

According to the prosecution, some nine suspects, including Habib Jan Baloch, Uzair Baloch, Zafar Baloch, Fahim Badshah, Adnan, Mushtaq and others nominated in the FIR were involved in the abduction and murder of Constable Raj Mohammad in April 2012.

The constable had left the police station in plainclothes for monitoring of police deployment in Kalri, when men in a double-cabin vehicle and two motorcycles had allegedly kidnapped him on Mauripur Road, it added. Later, he was found murdered.

A case (FIR 91/2012) was registered at the Kalri police station under Sections 302 (murder), 365 (kidnapping), 109 (abetment) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code read with Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 against them on the complaint of ASI Ishtiaque.

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