SC notices to Nawaz, 145 other leaders as Model Town carnage trial to begin today

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan has issued notices to 146 persons including former prime minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif, former Punjab Chief Minister and party President Shehbaz Sharif and his son Hamza Shehbaz in case pertaining to formation of Joint Investigation Team (JIT) in Model Town carnage case.

A five-member larger bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Mian Saqib Nisar and comprising of Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, Justice Azmat Saeed, Justice Faisal Arab and Justice Mazhar Alam Mian will take up the case today (December 5).
Notices have also issued to 146 including former provincial minister Rana Sanaullah, former Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, former defence minister Khawaja Asif, former information minister Pervaiz Rasheed, state minister Abid Sher Ali and Attorney General.
On November 19, the Supreme Court had constituted a larger bench for the formation of Joint Investigation Team (JIT) in Model Town carnage case.

During the hearing headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar at SC Lahore registry, Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) chief Tahirul Qadri said that the case has suffered a lot after the indictment of former Punjab Inspector General Mushtaq Sukhera.
He further requested the court to form JIT for proper investigation.
Meanwhile, Gullu Butt, the baton-wielding man who was caught vandalizing property during violence in Model Town, said he was innocent and that he will accept whatever court will announce for him.

On the other hand, National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) Director General Shahzad Saleem informed the court that former Punjab Chief Minister (CM) and Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif doesn’t want to appear in Model Town carnage case.

Shehbaz Sharif, who is under NAB’s custody on a physical remand, has said that he doesn’t want to attend the hearing and suggested his lawyer’s name for the proceedings.
The SC had issued notices to former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Shehbaz Sharif and 139 others.

Earlier, Lahore High Court (LHC) had turned down PAT plea seeking summons of ex-prime minister Nawaz Sharif, former Chief Minister of Punjab (CM) Shehbaz Sharif and ten other ministers in the case.

PAT, in its appeal against the ruling of the trial court, had requested LHC to call former ministers Khawaja Saad Rafique, Rana Sanaullah, Khawaja Asif and others in the case.

Police sources had revealed that former Punjab law minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Rana Sanaullah was the mastermind of the carnage. Sanaullah had directed to launch operation against the Model Town protesters despite then home secretary Azam Suleman’s opposition, they added.

On June 17, 2014, Punjab police went to remove the barriers placed outside PAT Chief Dr Tahirul Qadri’s residence and MQI Secretariat in Model Town. The MQI workers resisted the move which led to a deadly clash leaving 14 workers dead and dozens injured. – NNI

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