ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Tuesday directed the federal government to register a case of murder of senior journalist and anchorperson Arshad Sharif, and to complete the process today.
The directions came after the top court took suo moto notice of the journalist’s murder. The court had formed a five-member larger bench which heard the case on Tuesday.
The suo moto notice was been taken on the recommendation of Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Umar Ata Bandial.
The chief justice issued a notice to the foreign secretary, interior secretary and information minister secretary along with DG FIA, DG IB, and the president of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists.
“The journalist community in the country and the public at large are deeply distressed and concerned about the death of the senior journalist and are seeking the court’s scrutiny of the matter,” the apex court stated.
However, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has also asked to probe into Arshad Sharif’s murder.
Arshad Sharif was a senior journalist, who had been shot in the chest and head allegedly by police after he and his driver had driven through a police roadblock on a dirt road outside of the Kenyan capital of Nairobi.
The police had claimed that Sharif, along with his driver, was driving from Magadi Town to Nairobi when they were flagged down at the roadblock manned by five police officers.
But when Arshad Sharif’s driver did not stop and ran the blockade, police fired at the vehicle killing Arshad Sharif.
However, autopsy showed that Arshad Sharif was shot from far too close a range compared to what was being claimed by Kenyan police.
Subsequently, Kenyan Police said that the Independent Policing Oversight Authority would take over the case.
According to police deputed at the roadblock, they had received a tip-off to intercept a car similar to the one Sharif was traveling in following a carjacking incident in Pangani area of Nairobi and the possibility of a kidnapping.
And a few minutes later, Sharif’s car emerged at the roadblock and they were stopped and asked to identify themselves.
They allegedly failed to stop and drove past the roadblock.
This prompted a brief chase and shooting that left Sharif dead. Their car rolled and his driver was injured and taken to hospital.
He later told police he and his slain colleague were developers and were headed for a site in Magadi.