ISLAMABAD: The outgoing secretary of the District Bar Association Islamabad on Monday gave a call to boycott courts against the arrest of a lawyer in connection with the child maid torture case.

A notice issued by the association secretary, Zafar Khokhar, whose term is expiring by the weekend, asked the lawyers not to appear before any court on January 10 against the arrest of Raja Zahoor Advocate, the lawyer of Tayyaba’s parents.

Mr Zahoor played a key role in making a compromise between the parents of Tayyaba, 10, and the additional district and sessions judge (ADSJ), who is accused of torturing her.

Though Mr Zahoor was the lawyer of Tayyaba’s parents, he argued the case to secure the bail of the spouse of the ADSJ. The lawyer submitted the compromise deed signed between the ADSJ, the parents and an aunt of the girl to another ADSJ, Raja Asif Mehmood.

Raja Zahoor Advocate, the victim’s counsel, played a role in arranging a compromise between Tayyaba’s parents and the ADSJ

In the affidavits, the parents pardoned the family of the ADSJ unconditionally and said they were not willing to pursue the case.

Later, the lawyer filed a petition with ADSJ Atta Rabbani for the custody of the child from the women crisis centre. Within a few minutes, Judge Rabbani passed an order in favour of the parents and handed the child to them.

After the Chief Justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar took a suo motu notice of the torture case, Tayyaba went missing.

CJP Nisar ordered the police to recover the child by January 11. Subsequently, the police raided different places and made a number of arrests, including Mr Zahoor, and recovered the minor girl from the suburb of the federal capital.

The association secretary came to rescue the lawyer at a time when the campaign for the annual elections of the bar was at its peak.

The administration of Islamabad High Court (IHC), on the other hand, referred the matter related to the ADSJ to the administration committee of the court.

In a report submitted to the Supreme Court, the IHC administration said the committee may take disciplinary action against the judge.

Sources said the IHC registrar had also conducted an inquiry into the alleged torture on the maid and exonerated the ADSJ from the charges. The sources said the report pointed out that the spouse of the judge was involved in the child’s maltreatment. It said since the ADSJ had employed a minor girl, disciplinary action may be taken against him.

But Raja Rizwan Abbasi, who represented the spouse of the judge in the sessions court, claimed that the child was not a domestic servant but had been adopted by the family a couple of years ago. The couple took care of her like their own child, he added.

Published in Dawn, January 10th, 2017



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