Karachi fire: SHC bails accused


Three factory-owners facing murder charges over the deaths of 289 people in a huge fire in Karachi handed themselves in to court on Friday to request pre-arrest bail, their lawyer said.
Workers burned to death or suffocated in the massive blaze that engulfed Ali Enterprises clothing factory, which made ready-to-wear clothes for export to Western retailers, on Tuesday evening.
Police registered a murder case over the fire on Thursday, saying the owners — Abdul Aziz, Mohammad Arshad and Shahid Bhaila — had shown “utter negligence” about workers’ safety.
The trio, who have not been arrested, appeared in the high court in Larkana, 450 kilometres (300 miles) north of Karachi and were granted “protective bail” for eight days, their lawyer Aamir Mansoor Qureshi told AFP.
He said they went to the Larkana court as they feared for their lives in Karachi, the metropolis of 18 million people which came to a standstill on Thursday as a mark of respect for the victims of Pakistan’s worst ever industrial fire.
“We prayed to Justice Hasan Azhar Rizvi that we are willing to proceed through the legal course, and without a protective bail security repercussions were there,” Qureshi said.
A court official confirmed the ruling, which means the trio cannot be arrested before September 22, and said the judge had ordered them to appear in court in Karachi before the bail expired.
“The court also directed the immigration officials to ensure they do not leave the country,” the official added.
Up to 600 people were working in the building, which officials said was in poor condition without emergency exits, forcing dozens to jump from upper storeys to escape the flames. Others were trapped in the basement, where they perished.
The case has highlighted Pakistan’s dismal industrial safety standards, with badly-paid workers given little equipment to protect them from hazardous conditions.


  1. wow unbelievable! killing 300 ppl wont land u in jail in Pakistan, but if ur a kid with downs syndrome who happens to collect garbage ull be thrown into jail for blasphemy

  2. MQM is running a parallel government. Rauf Siddiqui, an incompetent and corrupt minister, chose to send his resignation to the governor instead of CM. The deadly fire which killed hundreds of workers bears the same signatures as to that one some years ago. MQM could do any thing to fail yesterday's successful protest all over Sindh against LG ordinance.

  3. Phir bhi Bhutto zinda hey!! Jiala judge giving Jiala factory-owners a Jiala gift!! Why is it always necessary that every "corrupt" link ends up in Larkana?? Jeyeyeye Bhutttooooooooooo!!!!!

  4. @Bilal Sheikh, and in particular, if you are a "Punjabi" kid with down syndrome, you sure will be thrown in jail!! If you are a Sindhi Jiala, you will get a red carpet bail-out before arrest in Larkana!!

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