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ISLAMABAD: Advocate General (AG) of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Waqar Khan Wednesday submitted in the Supreme Court the report of joint investigation team (JIT) constituted to probe Mashaal Khan's lynching.

A three-member SC bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar heard the suo moto notice case of killing of a student of Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan, Mashaal Khan, by a mob on allegedly publishing blasphemous content online.      During the course of proceedings, the KP Advocate General informed the court that 53 suspects had been arrested, 49 were in jail on judicial remand and four were in police custody on phyical remand, while two others were on the run.

The key suspect Imran, who had been arrested, confessed his crime, he added.

The AG said the video footage of Mashaal Khan's murder had been sent to laboratory and the final charge sheet would be presented before the court after laboratory report.

The chief justice said the court did not want to interfere in the investigation process, but it should be done quickly without wasting time.

He observed that it seemed that there was a campaign behind the murder of Mashaal Khan as even the news of his lynching did not reach the police.

The chief justice also asked whether the video footage that showed the mob of university students kicking the dead body of the victim had been obtained from CCTV footage or social media. The court wanted to know what happened to the body of the victim, he added.

Advocate Khawaja Izhar, counsel for Mashaal Khan's father, said the video was enough to serve as evidence in the case.      He said Mashaal's sisters were unable to continue their studies after the incident.

Iqbal, father of Mashaal Khan, also appeared before the bench and informed that the police had so far arrested actors, not the directors of the lynching of his son. "My son was beaten from 10 am to 3 pm," he added.      He said the police were present on the occasion but did not take any action.

The chief justice remarked that a thorough investigation would be conducted to find if the police showed negligence during the incident.

Addressing Mashaal's father, he said the court would ensure that the family got justice.

Later, the court directed the JIT to complete all requirements in the case and adjourned hearing of the case for three weeks.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2017

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