ATC Sentences Two SSP Activists To Death For Target Killings
Two activists of the banned Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) have been sentenced to death by an anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Thursday.
According to a report in The News, the court convicted the SSP activists of the targeted killings of two people belonging to the Shia community, a shopkeeper and a physician.
The victims, Shehryar Abbas Rizvi and Dr Naseem Aun Jafferi were murdered in 2014. The two SSP activists, Syed Ahmed Hassan and Muhammad Naeem Khan were found guilty of murdering Shehryar Abbas, while the former was also found guilty of murdering the physician, Dr Naseem Jafferi.
The ATC judge, in his verdict, observed that these cases were not regular homicide, but the targeting of the victims also created terror, insecurity, and panic among people, especially the members of the victims’ families.
The prosecution had stated that Hassan and Khan were members of the banned outfit SSP, and had targeted Rizvi at his shop in June, 2014.
On the other hand, Dr Jafferi was at his Javed Clinic in August, 2014, when he was shot by two people on motorcycles. The physician was also the information secretary for the Pakistan People’s Party in Korangi district.
The prosecution had argued in court that both murders had sectarian motivations and that the victims were systematically targeted after reconnaissance by the accused.
The accused had maintained their innocence and had claimed that the police had falsely implicated them in these cases.
In his final remarks in the trial, the judge said that the prosecution had successfully established their case while the accused could not prove themselves to be innocent. Both the accused were sentenced to death and ordered to pay Rs200,000 to the families of the victims.