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PHC admits appeals in Mashal lynching case

PESHAWAR: The Peshawar High Court (PHC) on Tuesday admitted for hearing appeals challenging the verdict of an anti-terrorism court in Mashal Khan lynching case.

A two-judge bench of the high court issued notices to all parties involved in the case on appeals filed by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, Mashal’s father and the convicts who were awarded jail terms by the trial court.

The bench, comprising Justice Qalandar Ali Khan and Justice Ishtiaq Ibrahim, directed the appellants whose conviction have temporarily been suspended to be in attendance at the next hearing.

Mashal, 23, a student at Abdul Wali Khan University (AWKU) in Mardan, was beaten and shot to death on April 13 last year by an unruly mob instigated by rumours that he had committed blasphemy by posting sacrilegious content online.

The high court circuit bench in Abbottabad earlier had suspended the conviction of 25 suspects in the  case

On February 07,  the ATC sentenced the prime suspect to death while five others to 25 years’ imprisonment in the case.

ATC Judge Fazal-i-Subhan Khan acquitted 26 suspects and awarded three years of jail term to 25 other accused in the case.

Convict Imran, who has been awarded capital punishment, was found guilty of firing shots at the victim student from his pistol, which led to his death.

He had also confessed to the crime before the court.

Nearly 50 prosecution witnesses testified against the suspects during the course of the hearing conducted inside Haripur Central Jail.

The prosecution charged 61 people in the case, while 57 of them were arrested and produced before the court for trial.

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