AG seeks transfer of Pearl case from ATC-2
KARACHI- A division bench of the Sindh High Court issued on Thursday notices to the accused/respondents in the Daniel Pearl kidnapping and murder case for Friday.
The bench, comprising Chief Justice Saiyed Saeed Ashhad and Justice Ghulam Rabbani, was hearing a criminal miscellaneous application seeking transfer of the case from the trial court, the anti-terrorism court No 2, headed by Judge Abdul Ghafoor Memon.
The advocate-general Sindh, who has filed the application, has taken the plea that the accused made threatening gestures to him and prosecution witnesses during the hearing on Wednesday, but the court failed to take due notice of that.
The AG has also taken the plea that the trial court has not recorded the entire testimony of a prosecution witness.
After initial arguments, the bench issued notices to the respondents for April 26.
Earlier, trial of the case was transferred from the ATC-3 to the ATC-2 as defence counsel Abdul Waheed Katpar objected to the trial by Judge Arshad Noor Khan after the prosecution cited four police officials as witnesses, who were present in the courtroom of ATC-3 when accused Omar Shaikh was produced for obtaining remand.
The accused allegedly made some statement about Daniel Pearl’s kidnapping and murder.
Mr Katpar maintained that under the circumstances the ATC-3 judge himself became a witness, so he could not try the case. He also objected to the transfer of the case to the ATC-4 after which the case was transferred to the ATC-2.
There are four ATCs functioning in Karachi, and now only the ATC-I is left which is presided over by Syed Aley Maqbool Zaidi.