SC Orders Formation Of New JIT To Probe Arshad Sharif Killing

SC Orders Formation Of New JIT To Probe Arshad Sharif Killing
The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed the federal government to formulate a new, 'independent' Joint Investigation Team (JIT) to investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of journalist Arshad Sharif who was killed in Kenya in October.

The development comes a day after the SC directed the government to register an FIR regarding the case after taking suo motu notice of Arshad Sharif's killing. The case was heard today (Wednesday) by chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial, who headed a five-member bench comprising Justice Ijazul Ahsan, Justice Jamal Mandokhel, Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi and Justice Mohammad Ali Mazhar.

In the hearing today, CJP Bandial said that the JIT should include officials from the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), the Intelligence Bureau (IB), the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and the police.

He added that the FIR that was submitted to the court the day before was brief, as a proper investigation had not taken place owing to the lack of witnesses. The CJP then ordered the government to issue a notification and inform the court about the members of the new JIT by tomorrow, adding that the team should include senior officials.

CJP Bandial further said that the investigation should begin with Khurram and Waqar, the two brothers who Arshad Sharif was reportedly staying with in Kenya.

Justice Naqvi asked why a case had not been registered against the Kenyan police officials who had reportedly shot Sharif. "This is a very serious matter. We are warning the government to also take it seriously," he said.

The hearing was then adjourned till tomorrow (Thursday).