ISLAMABAD - A local court yesterday extended physical remand of three persons allegedly involved in the murder case of MQM leader Dr Imran Farooq.

District and Sessions Judge Raja Khurram Ali Khan granted Federal Investigation Agency seven days physical custody of three accused including Moazzam Ali Khan, Khalid Shamim and Syed Mohsin Ali and directed the agency to produce them before the court on January 4.

Due to winter holidays in the court of Anti-Terrorism, the FIA produced the accused before the duty magistrate Haider Ali Shah and sought their 14 days remand.

However, lawyer of the accused Moazam Ali contented that the court had no authority to extend the remand of his client. As a result, the court sent the case to Additional Sessions Judge Raja Khurram Ali.

In the court of Additional Sessions Judge, the Investigative Officer informed the court about the initial investigations of FIA team and requested it to extend their physical remand for further investigations.

Lawyers for the three accused opposed the extension in their physical remand and requested the court not to extend the physical custody but the court rejected their plea and granted FIA their seven days physical custody.

In this matter, the counter-terrorism wing of the law-enforcement agency has registered a case against the MQM chief Altaf Hussain, Muhammad Anwar, Iftikhar Hussain, Kashif Khan Kamran, Syed Mohsin Ali, Moazzam Ali and Khalid Shamim.

The FIA's counter-terrorism wing in Islamabad has registered the case for “conspiracy, assistance, abetment and ultimately assassination of Dr Imran Farooq, ex-Parliamentarian and senior member of MQM in London on September 2010. The case has been registered under sections 302, 34, 109, 120B of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act.

The government of Pakistan through FIA's counter-terrorism wing is the complainant in the case.