Cleric, who faces charges of involvement in Qandeel’s murder, says he’s happy to be a free man now after his bail
Mufti Abdul Qavi, who faces charges of involvement in the murder of model and actress Qandeel Baloch, said on Wednesday that the machine used to conduct his polygraph test was faulty and he had not lied.
The cleric was granted bail in the case by a court in Multan a day earlier.
“It has been 17 months since Qandeel was murdered but police have yet to submit a challan to the court,” he told reporters at a press conference in Multan, Express News reported.
“I am happy that I’m a free man today. But I’ll be happier when the police complete the formalities of the case by submitting the challan,” he added.
Qavi said he had cooperated with the police by responding to all their queries during interrogation. “I’ll accept whatever the court decides,” he maintained.
The cleric said his time in jail was a learning experience and it had allowed him to gain knowledge about the prisoners’ living conditions.
“I urge social welfare organisations and NGOs to step forward to improve the lives of inmates and help the innocent people who are languishing in jails. They can contact me if they need guidance for this purpose,” he remarked.
Qavi had undergone a polygraph test after police included his name in the investigation process of the murder. The results of the test suggested that the cleric was lying.
Qandeel – born Fouzia Azeem – was found strangled to death in her house in Multan’s Karimabad area on July 16, 2016. At that time, her father had claimed that she was killed by Waseem, her younger brother.
Waseem was arrested by the police in Dera Ghazi Khan later that night and confessed to killing her sister in the name of ‘honour’. At a press conference organised by the police, Waseem confessed to have drugged and strangled her.
Two more accused in the case, taxi driver Basit and Aslam Shaheen, another brother of the deceased, are on bail, while Arif, yet another accused, had been declared a proclaimed offender.
Qandeel’s selfies with Qavi last year went viral on social media, causing a nationwide furore, after which the cleric’s membership of the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee and the National Ulema Mushaikh Council was suspended.
Qavi was arrested last month after a court rejected an extension to his pre-arrest bail. The police declared Qavi as a suspect in the case at the request of Azeem, Qandeel’s father.
Azeem alleged that his daughter was killed on Qavi’s orders and that the cleric had offered him money to drop charges against him.