Islamabad - Industrial Area police on Sunday booked three of its officials over the killing of an ‘under-detention thief’ after his dead body was recovered from a nullah.

According to details, the police a day earlier arrested one Arman Masih, son of Hanif Masih, of sector I-10 over suspicion of theft. The arrest came after the police on a tip-off intercepted a taxi and recovered stolen batteries from it.

However, according to the police, the taxi driver escaped from the scene. Later, he was found hiding in a CDA sewerage treatment plant from where the guards handed him over to the police. The police said that during interrogation, the accused allegedly confessed to have committed a number of thefts.

The police said the accused was later taken to a junkyard for the recovery of stolen items from where he escaped. His dead body was found next day from a local nullah which sparked anger amongst the Christian community of the sector.

A large number of people gathered at the residence of the deceased and demanded strict action against the police officials, whom they believed, had killed the accused.

The police, however, said that the accused ran away towards nullah and drowned after escaping the police custody, as he could not swim being handcuffed.

After hours-long negotiations with the relatives, the police agreed to their demand and booked three of its officials including ASI Shahid Nazeer, Constable Waseem and Constable Habibullah under section 302.

The relatives later in the day performed burial rituals of the deceased. Further investigation is under way.

The station house officer of the industrial Area police station was also suspended following the killing and Asjad Mahmood has been made SHO of the station.

Meanwhile, during continuous efforts to curb criminal activities in the city, Islamabad police nabbed as many as 197 criminals during the first 15 days of April, besides recovering valuables worth Rs 19,781,000 and huge cache of contraband and weapons.

According to details, Interior Minister Ch Nisar Ali Khan directed Islamabad police to ensure elaborate measures for protection to the lives and properties of the citizens. Following his directions, IGP Islamabad Tahir Alam Khan reviewed strategy of high vigilance in the city and enhanced patrolling measures and strict checking at entry as well as exit points, said a police spokesman on Sunday.

Owing to this strategy of high vigilance in the city, Islamabad police got remarkable success during 15 days and nabbed 197 criminals.

As many as 48 criminals were arrested for having narcotics or illegal weapons and police recovered 46.9 kilograms hashish, 119 wine bottles, 31 pistols, 4 Kalashnikovs, 5 guns and 154 rounds from them.

Police apprehended 9 persons for their alleged involvement in snatching and tempering cars and recovered 17 snatched as well as tempered vehicles and 5 motorbikes from their possession. In addition, police nabbed 85 alleged dacoits and thieves, and recovering gold ornaments, mobile phones, laptops, cash and other valuables from them.

One person was arrested for his involvement in murder case while 13 proclaimed offenders and 20 court absconders were also apprehended.

Islamabad police also took prompt action against alms-seekers and arrested 918 beggars. Amongst them, 529 were shifted to Edhi Home while challans were submitted into relevant courts against the professional beggars.

The police spokesman said that significant reduction has been witnessed in car and bike theft and dacoity, murder, kidnapping for ransom, and robbery incidents.

He said that special police pickets at entry as well as exit points and effective checking helped reduce such nature of crime.

Meanwhile, Islamabad police have arrested 14 suspects during a search operation conducted in various areas of the city. Police teams conducted the search operation in the area of police station Khanna and succeeded to nab 14 suspects who are being investigated further.