LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court on Wednesday summoned the counsel of both parties by July 10 for final arguments on a petition filed by defence counsel challenging the jurisdiction of anti terrorism court in the Farzana case.
The defence counsel argued that the incident had not taken within the limits of the Lahore High Court. He stated that the incident had taken place almost half kilometer away from the court. He quoted a decision of the LHC administration according to which any untoward incident taking place within the premises of LHC would be referred to ATC. He argued that murder case was not a result of an instant act of terrorism but a pre-planned murder as a result of old enmity. He asked how a murder incident which was result of an old enmity could be referred to the ATC. Moreover, he claimed that DIG Investigation Punjab Zulifqar Hameed had already submitted before the LHC that Section 7-ATA did not apply to the instant case so it should be referred to the session courts.
On the other end, the counsel of complainant argued that brutal murder of Farzana had created a wave of fear in the whole country and it had brought shame to the country as well. He said that the way Farzana was murder was atrocious. He implored the court not to delete anti-terrorism sections from the FIR. Moreover, ATC has jurisdiction to trial the said case, the counsel added.
The court after hearing the arguments of both parties adjourned the hearing by July 10 for final arguments. Farzana was stoned to death outside the premises of Lahore High Court on May 27. The Punjab chief minister, following directions of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, had ordered police to refer the case to ATC.
Farzana Iqbal was allegedly stoned to death by her father and two brothers outside the Lahore High Court on May 27 after she was about to appear before the LHC where she waslikely to give her statement in favour of her husband Iqbal with whom she had eloped. Her family claimed that she had married Mazhar Abbas and contracted second marriage without getting divorce from her first husband Mazhar so her second marriage was illegal and un-Islamic.
Police has so far arrested five people in connection with Farzana Bibi case, including her two brothers Zahid Ali and Ghulam Ali, her father Azeem, her former husband Mazhar Abbas and her brother-in-law Jehan Khan.Previously, the court had indicted Farzana’s father Azeem, two brothers Ghulam Ali and Zahid Iqbal, former husband Mazhar Abbas and a cousin, Jahan Khan.