GUJRANWALA: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Monday extended the physical remand of as many as 85 suspects in the Sialkot lynching case.
Amidst tight security, police produced the suspects before the court after the completion of their earlier remand. The investigation officer (IO) of the case pleaded with the court to extend their remand for further investigation.
The court, accepting the IOs plea, extended the physical remand of the suspects by 14 more days and directed him to present them on next hearing on Jan 17.
The ATC judge directed the investigation officer to immediately complete his investigation into the case and submit the final case charge-sheet.
Priyantha Kumara, a 49-year-old Sri Lankan national, was lynched by a mob of workers at a factory on December 3, where he was working as manager. A first information report (FIR) was registered against hundreds of unidentified men, including workers of the factory.
Scores have since been arrested and are facing investigation. The Punjab government and the prosecution team in December decided to conduct the jail trial of the high-profile case due to security concerns.
The decision was reached during a meeting of government officials and the prosecution team to ensure law and order situation and avoid any untoward incident. The jail management has been instructed to make all the arrangements for the jail trial.
Meanwhile, Lahore High Court Chief Justice Muhammad Ameer Bhatti directed Sialkot District Police Officer Omar Saeed Malik to complete challan of the accused involved in the lynching of Sri Lankan citizen Priyantha Kumara and submit it to the court as soon as possible.
He gave the direction during a visit to the District Judicial Complex in Narowal on Tuesday. The CJ was accompanied by Justice Shujaat Ali Khan, Justice Sajid Mahmood Sethi, Justice Masood Abid Naqvi, Justice Anwarul Haq Pinnu and LHC Registrar Irfan Ahmed Saeed.
DPO Malik gave a detailed briefing to the chief justice on the progress made so far in the lynching case of the Sri Lankan citizen.
The CJ also addressed the judicial officers in the committee room of the District and Sessions Court. He laid the foundation stone of the expansion plan of the Judicial Complex in Sialkot. An amount of Rs100m would be spent on construction of eight additional civil and family courts on 18 kanals land. DC Farooq and Exen Building Zahiruddin Babar briefed the CJ on the project.
Later, the chief justice laid the foundation stone of Judicial Complex to be constructed on 127 kanal land in the Pasrur tehsil at the cost of Rs350m. District and Sessions Judge Jazila Aslam presented a souvenir to the LHC CJ.