Two jailed for life for killing renowned artist Gulgee, wife, maid

Karachi

KARACHI: A Sessions Court on Tuesday awarded life imprisonment to two men in the murder case of noted artist Ismail Gulgee, his wife Zareen and maid Asiya around nine years ago.

The District South additional sessions judge VIII, Sarah Junejo found Akram Ali and Mohammad Anwar, both servants with the victim couple, of killing them in December 2007.

The judge also ordered the convicts to pay a compensation of Rs100, 000 each to the heirs of the deceased peoples. The convicts will have to undergo six months additional imprisonment, if they failed to pay the amount.

According to prosecution both the convicts had gone missing after the incident and were arrested two month later from a hotel near the Cantt Railway Station. A suitcase was also recovered from them in which the police found a Nikon F-5 camera and two paintings made by the slain artist. The victim’s Toyota sedan car was found with them.

The prosecution maintained that the suspects robbed the house and murdered the couple by torturing with a baton, hatchet and strangling them. They also killed the maid on the following day when she appeared for work.

After recording the evidences and hearing arguments from both sides, Justice Junejo sentenced both suspects to life imprisonment, observing “since the case is purely based on circumstantial evidence and it settled proposition of the law that normally penalty of death would not be in interest of justice.”

Besides, the judge also awarded the convicts an imprisonment of seven years for the offence of stealing the paintings, camera and car of the victim artist. Both the sentences will, however, run concurrently and only the longest term will be counted as the total imprisonment time.

The case was lingering for years for a number of reasons. Couple of judges, in different spells, heard the case. They also reserved their verdict. But it was never announced and the arguments were heard again.

The award-winning painter Gulgee, his wife Zareen and maid Asiya were found dead in their Clifton Block-3 residence in December, 2007.

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