Jan 052018

KARACHI: An accountability court directed on Friday a medical board to file a fresh report within 15 days on the health of former provincial information minister Sharjeel Memon after conducting required examinations.

After examining the former minister, a four-member medical board had submitted its report in the court a few days ago and besides recommending multidisciplinary treatments for the former minister, it had also suggested: “He is unable to be managed at the jail hospital and the board recommends proper medical treatment and investigations at the hospital”.

On Dec 13, the court had directed the provincial health secretary for constitution of a medical board after Mr Memon had moved an application seeking formation of a new board after the court had declared a medical board formed by jail superintendent illegal as it was constituted without the permission of the court.

The court had also asked the board to give its professional independent medical opinion in black and white on three aspects: whether the sickness cannot be properly treated on jail premises, whether specialised treatment needed and whether the continued detention in jail is likely to affect his capacity or hazardous to his life.

The board in its report contended that facilities at the jail hospital were inadequate for proper diagnosis and treatment since Mr Memon needed treatment in terms of neurosurgery, orthopaedic, physiotherapy and monitoring of liver enzymes, uric acid level and blood pressure.

The judge of accountability court-I, Rashida Asad, directed the medical board to conduct the advised examination and treatment and submit a fresh report about the health condition of the suspect within 15 days.

It may be recalled that the court had warned the health authorities of contempt proceedings during a previous hearing for not taking action on the report of jail authorities over non-availability of medical facilities after jail superintendent claimed that jail hospital lacked facilities to treat Mr Memon and his health and life could not be assured at the detention facility.

NAB had filed a reference in 2016 against the former minister, the then provincial information secretary Zulfiqar Ali Shalwani and others for allegedly committing corruption between 2013 and 2015 in awarding advertisements of provincial government’s awareness campaigns in electronic media.

Mr Memon along with 11 others landed in prison in October after the Sindh High Court dismissed their interim pre-arrest bail.

Shahzeb murder case

A district and sessions court ordered on Friday publication in the media about a compromise reached between the suspects and the victim’s family in the Shahzeb Khan murder case.

When the case came up for hearing on Friday, Shahrukh Jatoi and three other suspects, who were released after obtaining bail on Dec 23, turned up before the court along with their lawyers.

Before making a decision on the compromise application, the court decided to publish an advertisement asking that any legal heirs of the deceased can approach the court till Jan 20 in case of any objection.

An antiterrorism court had sentenced Shahrukh Jatoi and his friend Siraj Talpur to death in 2013 and two other co-accused got life imprisonment for killing 20-year-old Shahzeb Khan, on Dec 25, 2012 in the Defence Housing Authority.

However, the Sindh High Court had set aside the conviction in November and sent the case to a district court for retrial after ruling that the offence was not an act of terrorism.

During the pendency of appeals the complainant party had approached the SHC and pardoned the convicts and on the directive of the high court the trial court had also verified the compromise and reported it back to the SHC in September 2014.

Shahrukh brother moves acquittal plea

A brother of Shahrukh Jatoi moved on Friday an acquittal application before a judicial magistrate in a case pertaining to Shahrukh’s escape to Dubai after the murder of Shahzeb.

Nawab Ali Jatoi and some other suspects moved applications and asked the court to exonerate them since their counsel contended that Federal Investigation Agency had no evidence against them and even the indictment had not been made despite the passage of around five years. The magistrate issued notices to prosecution for argument till next hearing.

Shahrukh has been booked for allegedly escaping on forged documents from Karachi airport to Dubai a couple of days after he was booked in the Shahzeb Khan murder case and his brother Mohammed Khurram, one of directors of the Sikandar Ali Jatoi group of companies, two PIA officials and some travel agents had also been chargesheeted for facilitating his escape.

Published in Dawn, January 6th, 2018

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