Verdict deferred in Baldia factory case, to be announced on September 22

An anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Karachi deferred the verdict announcement in Baldia factory fire incident, the verdict will now be announced on September 22.

The ATC had reserved its verdict on September 2nd, and was scheduled to be announced on Thursday (today).

During the hearing held at judicial complex inside Karachi Central Jail, the prosecutor submitted a list of victims who received compensation from the government and Ali Enterprises’ foreign buyer.

The court then adjourned the case till September 22nd.

Baldia Factory Fire

On September 11th 2012, a massive fire broke out at a garment factory owned by Ali Enterprises in Baldia Town area of Karachi. Between 300 and 400 workers were inside the factory when the blaze erupted, most of whom were left trapped inside as the blaze engulfed the entire complex.

In a report submitted by JIT to Sindh High Court (SHC) it was revealed that the fire was no accident and was in fact the result of an arson attack as it the factory was intentionally doused with flammable chemicals by Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) workers over the refusal of payment of extortion money of around Rs 200 million by the factory owners.

The incident resulted in more than 260 casualties of factory workers, resulting in immense public outrage.

The JIT report revealed that MQM’s Karachi Tanzeemi Committee (KTC) head Hammad Sidduqui directed MQM workers and sector in-charge Abdul Rehman, alias Bhola and M. Zubair, alias Chariya, to start the factory fire with the help of its four gatekeepers Shahrukh, Fazal Ahmed, Arshad Mehmood and Ali Mohammad.

Senior MQM leaders such as Rauf Siddiqui were also named as accomplices in the heinous crime.