Karachi Police on Monday arrested a union council chairman on the charge that he denied an alleged street criminal medical help after shooting him.
The UC chairman, Abdul Raheem Shah, belongs to the PML-N, while the alleged mugger, Irshad Ranjhani, was the city president of the nationalist Jeay Sindh Tehreek (JST) party.
The incident had sparked protests online and near the Karachi Press Club, with the alleged mugger’s supporters demanding the arrest of the UC chairman and action against policemen who had, according to the protesters, portrayed a victim as a criminal.
However, Karachi’s DIG East Amir Farooqui today stated that investigations had found that the JST leader had intended to rob the UC chairman when he was shot in self defence by the latter.
He said that: “Initial investigations have established that on Feb 6, UC-3 Chairman Shah had killed a suspected robber, later identified as JST’s Karachi president Ranjhani, with his licensed pistol within the remit of the Shah Latif Town police when he (Ranjhani), along with his accomplices, tried to intercept Shah’s vehicle to snatch cash that Shah had withdrawn from a bank.”
Farooqui added that the deceased had been chasing Shah from the Nursery area before finally intercepting him at the site of the incident. He denied that there was any personal enmity behind the murder. Ranjhani had been armed and had knocked on the car’s window and demanded the money, Farooqui said, but Shah, fearing for his safety, had opened fire in response.
The DIG reiterated that it was a clear case of mugging and resistance.
According to him, Irshad Ahmed Ranjhani had a criminal record and had been arrested at least thrice in Karachi. However, he noted that the UC chairman had also been nominated in three cases.
Farooqui also acknowledged that Shah had caused a delay in shifting the injured Ranjhani to a hospital.
“The law doesn’t permit anyone to keep any injured on the crime scene,” he said, adding that action was being taken against Shah for creating hindrance in shifting the accused to a hospital.
The police officer said that no separate FIR has been filed in accordance with the Supreme Court’s orders. A separate case will be filed only if the family wants the police to do so, he added.
He further said that Sub Inspector Riaz Hussain has been suspended for his failure to shift the injured Ranjhani to a hospital in time.
Earlier, Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah had intervened and sought a judicial inquiry into the incident.
The Karachi police chief, Additional Inspector General Amir Ahmed Shaikh, had subsequently constituted a team, headed by DIG East Amir Farooqui and comprising SSP East Azfar Mahesar and SSP Investigation (Malir) Dr Farrukh Malik, to enquire into Ranjhani’s death.