PESHAWAR: Mashal Khan’s family on Friday filed three different appeals in Peshawar High Court (PHC) challenging the acquittal of two accused in the 23-year-old student’s mob murder case.

A total of three appeals were filed by Muhammad Iqbal Khan, father of Mashal Khan against the release of Izhar Ullah aka Johnny and Sabir Mayar, who was earlier considered as the main accused in the on-campus mob murder of Mashal Khan.  He has also filed two appeals against the punishment of life improvement to Arif Mayar and Asad Ullah as the lawyer believes that there is ample evidence available, therefore, they shouldn’t have been released in sections 124.

The appeals were filed through senior lawyer Barrister Amir Ullah Khan Chamkani, who is also hired by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government to represent the state in the case and secure justice for Mashal Khan family.

The appeals are filed against the An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) judgment announced on March 21 sentencing two accused, including Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) former tehsil councillor Arif Khan, to life imprisonment in the Mashal lynching case.

Anti-Terrorism Court-III Judge Mehmoodul Hassan Khattak announced the judgment, which was reserved on March 16, awarding Arif Councillor and Asad Zia alias Asad Katlang life imprisonment on four counts each. However, the court acquitted the two accused, Sabir Mayar and Izharullah, in the case due to insufficient evidence.

Mashal Khan, a 23-year-old student of the Department of Mass Communication at the Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan, was lynched by a mob on April 13, 2017, after accusing him of blasphemy. However, the allegations were later proved to be false by a joint investigation team.

The anti-terrorism court in Abbottabad has awarded death sentence to one and 25-year-prison to five others in the Mashal Khan murder case. A total of 25 convicts were handed down three-year jail terms, which was later suspended by Peshawar High court.  The Mashal Family appeals against the Abbottabad ATC are also pending before the PHC.

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