Baldia case should be heard by military courts: Shafqat Mehmood

KARACHI: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shafqat Mehmood on Monday said the Baldia factory blaze case should be heard by the newly formed military courts.

Speaking in Geo News show “Capital Talk”, he said the 2013 fire incident that engulfed at least 260 innocent lives, falls under terrorism category and must be forwarded to the military courts following the Joint Investigative Team’s (JIT) report.

“What can be more serious than the killing of 260 people?” he questioned.

Commenting on a high-level meeting headed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif along with Army Chief Gen Raheel Sharif in Karachi earlier in the day, Mehmood said the time had passed for holding meetings, adding that implementation on National Action Plan (NAP) was the call of the hour.

The PTI leader demanded action against terrorists and extremists without any discrimination. “We can only face the challenges by disarming the armed outfits,” he added.
Federal Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid, in the same show, said that the issue of Baldia factory fire was given as much time and importance as the NAP, during the Sindh Apex Committee meeting.

Commenting on Mehmood’s demand to forward the case to the military courts, he said the culprits must be punished regardless of the nature of the court.

The minister claimed that the government was not reaching any political compromise in bringing the culprits behind the incident to book.

“We won’t even hesitate in sacrificing the power if a need arises in this regard,” he added.

It may be mentioned that the main public prosecutor in the Baldia Town factory fire case, Shazia Hanjra, has withdrawn from the trial.

Hanjra, earlier on Monday said that she did not have the support of the investigating officer and could not continue pursuing the case any further.

She claimed that the case has been tampered with intentionally and that facts need to be revealed.