Islamabad (Web Desk): The Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday directed the incumbent government to register a first information report (FIR) a case of the murder of senior journalist Arshad Sharif by tonight.
A five-member bench including Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan, Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail, Justice Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, and Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar is hearing the case.
The top court also sought the inquiry report of the committee formed by the government to probe the killing, adjourning the hearing till Wednesday.
During the hearing, the CJP asked that why report of the fact finding committee has not been provided to the court as yet.
On this, the additional attorney general informed the court that Interior Minister was in Faisalabad when the report was received. “The report will be handed over to the SC once Rana Sanaullah peruses it,” he said.
“Does the interior minister have to make changes to the report?” the CJP asked, adding that the court could also summon Rana Sanaullah.
“A journalist was killed. It should be revealed who was behind the killing,” the CJP remarked.
The additional attorney general responded by saying the report would be submitted by tomorrow.
However, the CJP told him to submit it today so the hearing could continue on Wednesday.
The CJP also termed Sharif’s medical report unsatisfactory.
Earlier today, CJP Umar Ata Bandial took suo motu notice of the “brutal killing” of journalist Arshad Sharif.
According to a press release issued by the top court, a five-member bench headed by the CJP will initiate the hearing of the matter today.
The SC statement added that the hounourable CJP has issued notices to Secretary Interior, Secretary Foreign Affairs, Secretary Information and Broadcasting, Director General (DG) Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) DG Intelligence Bureau (IB) and President Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ).
Former ruling party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has constantly been asking the SC to look into Sharif's death.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shehbaz also wrote to the CJP for the formation of a judicial commission to investigate Sharif's killing. A demand also made by the slain journalist's mother.
Arshad Sharif was shot dead in Kenya on October 23.
Initially, Kenyan media had quoted the local police as saying Sharif was shot dead by police in a case of “mistaken identity”.
However, later reports reconstructed the events surrounding the killing, stating that an occupant in Sharif’s car at the time of his killing was believed to have shot at paramilitary General Service Unit (GSU) officers.
Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah had also said that evidence suggested a prominent Pakistani journalist was the victim of a targeted killing in Kenya, not an accidental shooting, though he still needed more information on the incident.
Arshad had left Pakistan in August 2022 after a number of cases were registered against him.
It was reported that he was initially staying in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) after which he went to Kenya, where he was shot dead.
The Pakistani government had formed a two-member team, including FIA and IB officials, to probe the murder. The team had travelled to Kenya and UAE.
In November, the FIA had told a Senate committee that it is preparing a report following the return of the investigation team from Kenya.