LAHORE–An anti-terrorist court (ATC) on Friday sent Mustafa Kanju, a son of former Minister of Foreign Affairs Siddique Kanju, and four others on an eight-day-long physical remand.
Kanju was presented in an ATC today under extremely tight security and unauthorised individuals and lawyers with no connection to the case were prevented from entering court premises.
During the hearing, Kanju argued that the fact that he fired shots did not mean they led to Zain’s death. He claimed he was innocent and that the police and the victim’s relatives were conspiring to trap him in the case.
The lawyer of the accused stated that Zain had fallen victim to cross-firing between Mustafa and his ‘opponents’ – who have yet to be identified – and that Kanju had no personal enmity with Zain.
The ATC handed over Mustafa Kanju, Saadullah, Sadiq Amin, Ikramullah and Muhammad Asif to the police for an eight-day physical remand.
Kanju was arrested on Thursday after a case was registered against him under 7-ATA and Section 302 of the Pakistan Penal Code. He was accused of killing Zain, a 16-year-old orphan, and injuring Hussain, 18.
A policeman, who claimed to be the first official reaching the spot after the shooting, said on condition of anonymity that Kanju’s car had accidentally collided with another vehicle in the street. He alleged that Kanju, who was accompanied by a girl, was in an inebriated state at the time.
The policeman added that Kanju then came out of the car and started shouting at the female driver, blaming her for the accident. He said some people had gathered there and they tried to convince Kanju it was not the female driver’s fault. This infuriated Kanju, the policeman said, adding that he then called his guards and resorted to ‘aerial firing’ with bullets hitting the two boys.
Sources claimed Kanju’s six security guards were arrested on Wednesday night from his residence in Old Cavalry Ground. Police also recovered empty shells of a gun from the crime scene and later seized the gun used in the incident.
On Thursday, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif took notice of the incident, ordered arrest of the suspect and announced Rs0.5m for the family of the deceased. He also assured them that justice would be done.
The DSP concerned claimed he had arrested Kanju from Kahror Pakka, Lodhran district, whereas SSP Investigations Rana Ayaz Salim said Kanju was arrested from Khushab.
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