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ISLAMABAD: Saleem Qambrani, a senior civil judge of Pakistan’s Jacobabad district, and his son have been booked for their alleged role in a plot to murder a young couple.
SSP Pir Farid Jan Sarhandi, who had detected the case following a presidential directive, said Samia Detho and her husband Isthiaq Ahmed Sheikh had been allegedly killed by the girl’s parents and their accomplices about two months ago in Mori Mangar area of Tando Hyder. He said the judge’s son, Bilawal Qambrani, had been arrested.
The girl, who was eight months pregnant, had a miscarriage when she was tortured before being shot dead, according to Ismail Sheikh, complainant in the double murder case and brother of Ishtiaq, Samina’s husband. “We will file an application in the Sindh High Court on Tuesday seeking interrogation of Judge Saleem Qambrani,” SSP Sarhandi said.
Police picked up Haji Detho, the main accused, a day before Eidul Azha. He confessed to having killed Ishtiaq, a son of former journalist Ahmed Khan Sheikh, and made startling disclosures during interrogation.
Twenty-two people have been named in the FIR lodged by Ismail Sheikh with the Tandojam police. Three of them, including Bilawal Qambrani, Haji Detho and Mohammad Raheem, have been arrested.
The girl’s father Ahmed Detho and his son Mushaib Detho are believed to be hiding in Islamabad.
Manzoor Wahu, the investigating officer in the case, will move an application in the court for permission to exhume the girl’s body and for DNA sampling.
The accused told investigators that the girl had been buried in a village graveyard, while the body of Ishtiaq, the husband, was abandoned in an uninhabited place.
“The accused told police that after torturing and killing Ishtiaq they threw his body in a jungle. Wild animals have devoured his body and only limbs and bones were found,” Ismail said at his home in Mori Mangar as tears rolled down his cheeks.
A pall of gloom hung over Mori Mangar village where the Dethos and the Sheikhs live a stone’s throw from each other.
Ismail accused Judge Saleem Qambrani, who lives next to the house of Dethos, of being responsible for the double murder.
“He had been pressuring us since Samia eloped with Ishtiaq on Oct 10 last year. After our family members were picked up by Dethos and released on intervention by elders of the village, judge Qambrani asked us to let Samia return to her parents’ home or marry off two of our women to the Dethos and pay them Rs1m. We were warned be prepared for the consequences in case we didn’t agree to the conditions,” he said.
The judge also created hurdles in the investigation when Samia’s lawyer filed an application with police for ascertaining the couple’s whereabouts, Ismail alleged.
The families of Ishtiaq and Samia, who had studied together in a government school, had opposed their marriage because the two communities did not have a tradition of unions outside their own clans. The couple fled to Karachi and married on Nov 18, 2011. They were living in Surjani Town. Their families mounted a search but failed to trace them.