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Guest House Deaths Case: Prosecutor Wants Suspects Charged With Murder, Terrorism

Ten suspects’ trial was recommended by the prosecutor on the charges of murder and terrorism on Tuesday in the guest house murder case.

The state prosecutor, Shahid Mahmood Arain, gave the recommendations after examining the investigation report prepared by the investigating officer in a case related to the death of six members of the family from Quetta allegedly due to inhaling poisonous gas at the Qasr-i-Naz government guest house in Karachi on February 22.

The names of the accused persons who have been booked for manslaughter and selling toxic food or drinks are the following: Pakistan Public Works Department’s chief engineer Nadeem Akhtar Shaikh, assistant executive engineer Zakir Hussain, overseer Mehram Ali Brohi, controller of the guest house Sikandar Hayat, contractor Sanobar Ahmed Khan, guest house’s caretaker Nisar Ahmed Awan, room waiter Sajjad Hussain, receptionist Abdul Hameed Khan, sweepers Pervaiz Bhatti and Hira Nand.

The prosecutor stated that the investigation officer has collected the evidence, including CCTV footage of the guest house, along with the samples from the bodies of the victims which were later sent for chemical analysis to the HEJ Research Institute of Chemistry, University of Karachi, and the Forensic Science Laboratory, Lahore.

He said the police have recorded the statements of the suspect and witnesses, which were later testified before a judicial magistrate. The guest house staff had also indicated that they so some insects in room 58-A and told the management about it.

However, the witnesses, Mohammad Yousaf and Mohammad Arif, revealed in their statements that around 1 pm or 1:30 pm on Feb 21 the suspect named Nisar Ahmed took aluminum phosphide tablets (poison) from the store and applied it to family’s room without taking proper measures.

The prosecutor said that these facts were not disclosed in the record before nor did the suspect Nisar label the door of the room without taking proper measures and precautions.

Moreover, he wrote that KU’s HEJ Research Institute of Chemistry and the director of FSL Lahore have clearly stated in their reports that active aluminum phosphide was found in the articles and viscera of the victims.

The receptionist, Abdul Hameed, involvement in the crime was also clear as two witnesses, sweepers Boota Masih and Vinod, told him about the smell of poisonous material in the room but he paid no attention to it which led to the incident.

The prosecutor said actions of the suspects came within the ambit of Section 300 of the Pakistan Penal Code. After the incident the suspects also tried to destroy the evidence as told by witnesses, he added.

Mr Arain claimed that all the suspects were fully involved in this crime, adding that a sense of fear and insecurity had developed in the public, as they avoided staying at Qasr-i-Naz and other guest houses and hotels, which fell within the limits of Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997, as contended by the IO in the investigation report.

The prosecutor also said that the suspects knew that the aluminum phosphide was a dangerous substance. Moreover, they were not qualified or authorized to use the substance.

It has further been revealed that the suspects have bought a large amount these poisonous tablets from 2017 to February 2019 but did not maintain a record of it.

In the end, Mr. Arain stated that based upon the facts and evidence collected by the investigation officer proves link of the accused persons with the crime.

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