NA fact-finding body on Kharotabad incident formed


The National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights said Wednesday that uniform was being used by the law-enforcing agencies as a licence to kill innocent people, which could not be allowed.

The committee also constituted a fact-finding body, comprising Adviser to Prime Minister on Human Rights Mustafa Nawaz Khokar, Kishwar Zehra, Farah Naz Ispahani and Raheela Baloch, on the incident of Kharotabad in which five Russian nationals had been killed in Quetta.

The committee held a meeting with Riaz Fatyana in the chair to discuss the Kharotabad incident, killings of Hazara division people during protests in favour of Hazara province and deaths in road accidents.

“When the law-enforcing agencies, meant for protecting people, start breaking the law and killing innocent people, the citizens are justified in leaving the country.

So, all of us, irrespective of political affiliations, agree that the incident of Kharotabad was extrajudicial killings and it is our responsibility to protect the fundamental rights of the people,” the committee chairman, Riaz Fatyana MNA, said.

Brigadier Abdur Rashid, sector commander of the Frontier Constabulary (FC) Balochistan, told the committee that a high-powered body had been constituted to probe the incident and its report was being awaited.

Answering a question raised by Dr Atayya Inayatullah MNA, adviser to the prime minister on human rights, told the committee that he had been informed by the officials that the Chechens were killed when they had refused to bribe the policemen.

Meanwhile, Dr Syed Baqir Shah, who had conducted the post-mortem of the five killed people, refuted the police stance that they had died in an explosion on the site. The medical officer said the police officials had brought them to the hospital dead and 21 bullets had been recovered from their bodies while total 56 bullets had hit them.
The chairman said it had become clear that the police report was misleading. He added the committee would wait for the report of the Balochistan High Court’s judicial commission and request the chief justice to ensure that the report, due to be submitted by June 21, should not be delayed. The committee also decided to summon the Quetta DIG regarding the misleading report.

The committee also took notice of the killings of many people during protest demonstrations in favour of the Hazara province and warned the Hazara commissioner to face the music if the report was not submitted on the next meeting.

Moreover, the committee was told that public safety commissions and human rights cells had been established in the Punjab as per its directions. The committee directed the administrations of the other provinces to follow the Punjab.

The chairman expressed concern that around 7,000 people died in road accidents each year and stressed the need to improve the road safety as it was right of the citizens to have safe roads.