KARACHI - Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that the escape of two under-trial prisoners from Central Jail Karachi was the result of criminal negligence on the part of jail officials.  He was talking to media men just after attending the concluding ceremony of three-day Urs of Syed Abdullah Shah Ghazi here on Thursday.

The CM said that was the reason why 15 jail officials had been arrested, but lamented three of them were able to secure bail.

He further said the law enforcement agencies (LEAs) had to make hectic efforts to arrest terrorists and sometimes LEAs personnel had to lay down their lives for the purpose. “The escape of such terrorists from the custody [jail] is a serious crime,” he said, and added it could not be ignored at any cost.

He said he had no reports whether these prisoners had escaped to Afghanistan, “But we are in close coordination with other provinces and all the agencies, including police, Rangers, CTD and intelligence. “Inshallah they will be arrested soon,” the CM hoped.

The chief minister said that he had taken it [the issue of escaped prisoners] so seriously that the services of some senior officers had been placed under suspension while 15 jail others were arrested for their criminal negligence. “But, sorry to say out of these 15, three have got bails from the court,” he deplored and went on saying that the government had not only filed an appeal against their bail orders but the investigation officer (IO) of the case had also been suspended. “Now investigation has been assigned to a Superintendent of Police (SP). Normally, the investigation is not made by a senior officer of SP level, but keeping in view the seriousness of the case, it has been assigned to a SP,” Murad said. It may be noted that the IO had submitted an affidavit against the statement attributed to him which had been reproduced/quoted by the court in the bail order of three jail officials.  The chief minister said that a designated prosecutor had been appointed to prosecute the officers arrested in the case.

Talking about NAB law, the CM said that since Asif Ali Zardari was keen to strengthen the federation, therefore “He has directed me to revisit the Centre’s NAB law, particularly the Sindh Section which provincial assembly had repealed,” he said, and added “We are reconsidering it and will take decision in consultation with party leadership.”

Sindh govt to challenge

court’s verdict on IGP

Replying to a question about IG Police, he said that the matter was in the court and the court had recently announced its verdict. “We have respect for the court, but we have reservations over some of the parts of the verdict,” he said, and added, “Therefore the provincial government is going to challenge the decision.” Replying to yet another question, Murad said that had the Green Line project been initiated in some other province, it would have been completed much earlier. “But the projects of the federal government in Sindh hardly see light of the day,” he regretted.

Earlier, the chief minister laid chadar on the mausoleum of Syedna Abdullah Shah Ghazi and offered Fateha to conclude three-day event.

He was accompanied by Information Minister Syed Nasir Shah. He also distributed clothes among the poor women present there.