Naqeebullah’s murder: SC directs IG to arrest Rao Anwar within 3 days

KARACHI: The Supreme Court on Saturday directed the Sindh inspector general of police to nab and produce the suspended SSP MalirRao Anwar, who allegedly led the ‘fake police encounter to kill Naqeebullah Mehsood, within three days.

Hearing a suomoto case of Naqeebullah’s alleged extra-judicial murder at its Karachi registry, the bench headed by chief justice of Pakistan MianSaqibNisar and comprising justice GulzarAhmed and Justice Faisal Arab also sought details of Rao’s possible flee through borders or airports.

The CJP had taken suomoto notice when the issue of killing of Naqeebullah, a handsome young man found very active in sharing his pictures on social media, came into lights. He had also summoned Rao and sought report from the IGP within seven days.

In the outset of the hearing, the CJP asked the provincial Police Chief AD Khowaja if Rao was present in the court room. “No sir, he is on the run,” replied Khowaja.

Justice Nisar remarked that we had directed him to appear before the court, adding that he should have been there (in the court) at any cost. The court asked Khowaja what measures had he taken to arrest Rao.

The IGP in its reply told that the suspended police officer was not in the city at the time of registration of the case and the police was trying their best to nab the accused. “FIR has been lodged and the raids were also being conducted to arrest Rao,” he added.

“Has Rao been provided safe heaven by anyone in Karachi as there are many people who can do so? Perform your duties freely by not being pressurized, we will not let honest officers go fail,” the CJP said.

Justice Nisar also sought the deadline from the police chief of nabbing Rao, asking if Rao had gone out of the Sindh police’s reach. We are doing all we can but cannot give a time frame, Khowaja said. However, later he requested the court to allow the investigators three-day time for compliance of its orders.

The additional inspector general Counter Terrorism Department SanaullahAbbasi, who was also heading the committee to probe the alleged judicial killings submitted a report and informed the court that 444 accused had been killed in 745 police encounters held in District Malir during Rao’s tenure from 2011 to 2018.

The report read that six accused were killed in 2011, 18 in 2012; three in 2013; 152 in 2014; 72 in 2015; 75 in 2016; 110 in 2017; and eight were killed in only first 19 days of 2018.

The court asked the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) official had Rao flew out by a private plane.

“Currently, how many private plans are operating,” the CJP asked the CAA official who replied that currently more than six are operating. The bench directed CAA to submit affidavits of all private planes owner declare that Rao did not fly out through their planes.

The apex court also directed the interior ministry to check each border for ascertaining that if Rao had fled through these borders. The interior minister was directed to submit the report by Thursday.