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KARACHI, June 5: The Sindh High Court on Wednesday issued notice to the Rangers and police chiefs and others in a petition of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement seeking whereabouts of ‘missing’ party workers.

A division bench headed by Justice Ahmed Ali M. Sheikh also issued a notice to the advocate general of Sindh and put off the hearing to June 14.

In his petition filed by MQM leader Dr Farooq Sattar, he submitted that during the past four months nine workers had been ‘kidnapped’ by the Rangers and police.

He submitted that the party workers, including Fahim Riaz, Farooq Ahmed, Zeeshan Gul, Usman Ahmed, Saeed, Aftab Alam Shah, Muhammad Asif Khan and Arshad Ayaz Hussain, were taken into custody and when their families approached the police stations concerned, the police refused to register an FIR and avoided taking any action for their recovery.

He expressed apprehensions that their party workers might be tortured or killed by the law-enforcing agencies.

The petitioner asked the court to direct the respondents to divulge information about the whereabouts of the missing workers.

He impleaded the interior secretary, home secretary, Rangers director general, inspector general of police, Sindh, DIG-South, officer in charge of the Special Investigation Unit and CID and SHOs of police stations concerned as respondents.

Lawyers’ killing

The Sindh High Court Bar Association (SHCBA) on Wednesday filed a petition in the SHC against targeted killing of lawyers.

SHCBA president Mustafa Lakhani submitted in the petition that law and order situation in Karachi had been deteriorating as life and property of the people, including lawyers, was not safe.

He said that since 2007 over 40 lawyers had been assassinated in Karachi.

He stated that law-enforcing agencies failed to restore peace in the city.

The petitioner submitted that when a policeman or any other government official was killed in any violent incident, his/her family was compensated. However, lawyers were targeted in the city, but their heirs were not being compensated.

He stated that death sentences handed down to criminals were not being carried out, which encouraged other criminals to commit crimes.

Ombudsman’s appointment

The SHC on Wednesday issued notices to the principal secretary of the Sindh governor, the chief secretary, law secretary and others in a petition challenging the appointment of the Sindh ombudsman.

A division bench headed by Justice Ahmed Ali M. Shaikh also issued a notice to the advocate general of Sindh.

The petitioner, Advocate Muhammad Yousf Rajpar, submitted that a retired police officer, Asad Ashraf Malik, had been appointed as provincial ombudsman Sindh, in a clear violation of relevant laws.

He said that the provincial ombudsman was given judicial powers equal to a judge of the high court for awarding punishments. For that purpose, it was necessary to appoint a person who had a vast experience of law, he added.

He said that a retired judge or a senior lawyer could have been appointed on the position.

He asked the court to direct the provincial ombudsman to show under what authority of law he was holding the office.

Hearing of the case was adjourned to a date later be announced by the court’s office.—PPI