SSP Rao Anwar says he skipped court due to threats to life by Taliban

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Malir Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Rao Anwar on Tuesday cited security concerns and threats to his life by Taliban as the main reasons for his repeated absence from the courts.

He said this during the hearing of a case pertaining to charges of arson, rioting and murder against former Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) leader Saleem Shahzad at the city courts in Karachi on Tuesday.

Expressing annoyance over Anwar’s repeated absence from the hearing, a sessions judge remarked, “Why don’t we put you behind bars so you can promptly appear before the court, which otherwise seems highly unlikely”.

Responding to the remarks, Anwar said that he feared the Taliban, hence, could not make regular court appearances. He also sought further time to record his statement in the case.

The former MQM leader faces three cases dating back to 1992 pertaining to murder, kidnapping, arson and rioting.

The cases have been pending due to non-appearance of witnesses before the court, which had also served Anwar a show-cause notice in this regard. East district additional sessions judge had also ordered the arrest of the SSP and other police officials concerned.