An police team investigating the killing of Arsalan Mehsud in Karachi has declared him “innocent”.
Mehsud, a college student was killed by a police officer in plainclothes in Karachi’s Orangi Town Monday night.
According to sources, the team formed by Karachi West’s DIG Nasir Aftab has said that no shots were fired by the victim and his friend who were returning from tuitions.
Police earlier claimed that Mehsud was shot on suspicion of being a dacoit and a pistol was seized from his possession.
The police officer Tauheed was on intelligence duty with his friend Umair when the killing took place.
According to police, Mehsud, who was riding a motorcycle with his friend Yasir, were signaled to stop. When they didn’t, Tauheed fired the shots which killed Mehsud and injured Yasir.
The investigation revealed that Tauheed had no authority to stop the victim as he was in plainclothes.
After the killing, constable Tauheed was arrested while SHO Orangi Azam Gopang was suspended.
The victim's father Haji Liaquat Mehsud named Gopang as the perpetrator in a video posted on Twitter.
In the video, he is seen standing by his son’s body, saying, “My son was coming back from coaching... he is neither a thief nor a dacoit. It was a fake encounter. [Orangi] Poney panch police station’s SHO Azam [Gopang] killed him.”
The victim's uncle, while talking to SAMAA Digital said that Tauheed and his friend tried to snatch the motorcycle and opened fire when his nephew resisted.
Reactions to the killing
Political parties in the city have condemned the killing.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Haleem Adil Sheikh met victim’s family and termed it as another example of “police’s brutality.”
“This is the same behavior which took the life of Naqeebullah Mehsud,” said Sheikh.
Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Pakistan has also condemned the killing and demanded a judicial inquiry.
In October, an anti-terrorism court handed down death sentence to two police officer who killed teenager Intizar Hussain in a fake encounter in Karachi’s Defense area in 2018.
The court also awarded life imprisonment to six other Anti-Car Lifting Cell (ACLC) officials.
Nineteen-year-old Intezar Ahmed was chased down and shot dead at Karachi’s Khayaban-e-Ittehad after officials and personnel of the Anti-Car Lifting Cell resorted to indiscriminate firing on his white Toyota Corolla.
The police claimed that the teenager was killed in an act of targeted killing by at least two armed assailants on a motorcycle, it was later revealed that the ACLC officials were behind the brutal killing.
Naqeebullah Mehsud case
The murder of Naqeebullah Mehsud is one of the most high-profile cases involving police officers in recent history.
Mehsud, 27, and four others were killed at a farmhouse in Karachi’s Shah Latif Town on January 13, 2018.
Weeks after the deaths, Naqeeb’s friends and family shared his pictures on the social media asking for his whereabouts. The demand turned into a social media campaign which garnered a lot of attention and the then Chief Justice Saqib Nisar took suo motu action on January 19.
A report, compiled by an investigation team, called the encounter ‘fake’. Former SSP Rao Anwar, who took the credit for the ‘encounter’ and said the suspects were terrorists, denied involvement in the case
Anwar, DSP Qamar Ahmed Sheikh, and 13 others were later arrested in the case. Shah Latif SHO Amanullah Marwat and Inspector Shoaib Sheikh are still absconding.