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Tardy probe into Pak Rangers extrajudicial killing captured on camera

Source: ANI
June 10, 2011 14:23 IST
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Although the extrajudicial killing of an unarmed youngster by Rangers personnel in Pakistan has ignited a furore, efforts to bring the perpetrators to justice appear to be poorly coordinated.

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The Wednesday incident was caught live on camera, with the video footage showing a man in civilian clothes holding a youngster -- identified as Sarfaraz Shah -- by his hair and kicking him towards a group of about half a dozen Rangers personnel. A soldier pointed his rifle at the neck of Sarfaraz, who pleaded for mercy, saying: "I am helpless." 

The men surrounded Sarfaraz and as he moved towards one with his arms outstretched, he was pushed back and shot twice in the hand and leg. A longer version of the video posted on social networking websites showed the victim lying on the ground, screaming and requesting the Rangers to take him to hospital.

On Thursday, Interior Minister Rehman Malik announced the setting up of a joint investigation team, the chief of the paramilitary force declared that an in-house inquiry board would be established and the police investigators were still waiting for their senior's permission to initiate a process for determining the facts of the case.

However, for many, the video left no margin for investigation. 

Even to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's Adviser on Human Rights, Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar, it was an 'open and shut case', the Dawn reported.

"I don't think that there would be any need for such a lengthy investigation into the incident after the footages came on record," he told reporters after meeting the family of Sarfaraz Shah, the victim of Rangers' shooting.

The facts exposed by the video, however, failed to convince the authorities to make coordinated efforts to ensure justice and satisfy millions of citizens who watched the video, and thereby help the armed and paramilitary forces facing severe criticism after the Abbottabad raid, Kharotabad incident and the deadly attack on PNS Mehran, avoid another controversy.

"The probe into the matter will ensure transparency, and the findings of the JIT will be made public, and investigation will be done in a transparent manner," the interior minister said.

He said there was no doubt about the video clips and it was 'totally an injustice' on the part of the Rangers personnel, and added that the law would take its own course.

Malik, however, did not explain why the investigation process had been launched by different institutions separately, whereas the main investigative organisation -- city police -- in such cases remained directionless.

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Source: ANI
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