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Court seeks comments on Mahar’s plea over Jirga

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Monday directed the prosecutor general to file comments on a petition of Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F) Member National Assembly (MNA) Ghous Bux Mahar against the inclusion of charges related to offering women in marriage for the settlement of a murder.

Mahar, who is accused of heading an illegal jirga in Shikarpur to settle two women’s murders on the pretext of kari, had moved the court against inclusion of Section 310-A of the Pakistan Penal Code in the charge-sheet.

The applicant’s counsel had impugned the judicial magistrate’s order in which he accepted the charge-sheet against Mahar with the inclusion of Section 310-A.

The counsel submitted that the Shikarpur police had inserted the section in the charge-sheet with mala fide intention to harass his client, though no case under Section 310-A was made out against his client.

He submitted that both the women, Shahnawaz and Reema, were killed by their uncle who had confessed to the murders, adding that at no point was the question of Section 310-A attracted in the offence.

He prayed to the court to set aside the judicial magistrate’s order regarding acceptance of the charge-sheet with the inclusion of Section 310-A.

Mahar, along with 12 other tribal members, were booked by the police for holding an illegal jirga to settle the issue of two women murdered on the pretext of kari in Shikarpur.

Police had registered a case on a media report about the jirga convened at the residence of Mahar for the settlement of the two women killed over honour.

According to the reports, two women of the Mahar tribe had been killed by their uncle for allegedly having illicit relations with the men of the Jagirani tribe.

The Jagiranis were fined a total of Rs2.4 million for the alleged kidnapping and allegedly having illicit relations with the women.

A jirga was presided over by Mahar to apparently settle the tribal dispute, and both the parties had accepted its decision but no one was penalised for murdering the women.

The single SHC bench of Chief Justice Maqbool Baqar directed the prosecutor general to file comments on the application and directed the investigation officer to appear before the court with the relevant record of the case on May 26.

The News