Shahzeb murder case: SHC commutes two accused’s death to life term
KARACHI (92 News) – The Sindh High Court (SHC) commuted death sentence of two accused – Shah Rukh Jatoi and Siraj Talpur – to life imprisonment in the Shahzeb murder case.
Announcing the reserved verdict on the accused’s appeals against their sentence on Monday, the court upheld the life term of Sajjad Talpur and Ghulam Murtaza.
On March 11, a Sindh High Court division bench headed by Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar had reserved the verdict in the appeals against the conviction of Shahrukh Jatoi and others in the Shahzeb Khan murder case.
During the hearing, Mehmood Alam Rizvi advocate, the counsel for the complainant party, said that former DSP Aurangzeb Khan, Shahzeb Khan’s father, had died. He said that the deceased’s wife and two daughters were living abroad and did not want to appear before the court.
He added that a court representative could contact them through Skype or any other means in order to confirm the compromise that had been reached between both sides. In 2013, Shahzeb Khan’s parents had decided to pardon the culprits responsible for the murder of their son.
Shahzeb Khan case
In June 2013, an anti-terrorism court had sentenced Shahrukh Jatoi and his friend Siraj Talpur to death, while two other co-accused were awarded life imprisonment for killing 20-year-old Shahzeb Khan on Dec 25, 2012 near his home in the Defence Housing Authority.
The convicts, through their counsel, filed appeals in the Sindh High Court against the conviction while Shahrukh had also filed a criminal review application contending that he was a juvenile at the time of the offence.
In Nov 2017, a two-judge bench of SHC headed by Justice Salahuddin Panhwar had set aside the conviction and sent the case to a sessions court for fresh trial and to decide the compromise as well as other applications with an observation that the offence did not come within the parameters of the ATA. Later, the sessions court had released Shahrukh and others on bail.
Thereafter, around 10 civil society activists challenged the SHC judgment before the Supreme Court. The apex court converted the appeals into a suo motu case under Article 184(3) of the Constitution and in February 2018, set aside the SHC judgment and remanded the case back to the SHC with the direction that the appeals be decided by a different bench of the SHC within two months.