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LEAs asked to provide details of ‘missing persons’, special bench formed to probe the matter: CJP

October 12, 2018

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Chief Justice Saqib Nisar says judges will now be questioned over their performance and held accountable. —DawnNews TV
Chief Justice Saqib Nisar says judges will now be questioned over their performance and held accountable. —DawnNews TV

Chief Justice Saqib Nisar on Friday said he has asked the heads of all security and law enforcement agencies to furnish details about the whereabouts of "missing persons" or otherwise submit affidavits to affirm that the security institutions are not holding these people in custody.

He made these remarks while addressing the audience during an event held in Lahore to celebrate the silver jubilee of the Supreme Court Bar.

"If these organisations claim that they are not holding any missing persons, they would be asked to provide affidavits to this effect so that they could later be held accountable in case of any wrongdoing," the chief justice said.

He informed the gathering of lawyers that a special bench has been created to deal with the matter.

"The DG Inter-Services Intelligence, DG Investigation Bureau, DG Military Intelligence and the Rangers and police chiefs of all four provinces were all called to a meeting to discuss the matter of missing persons," Justice Nisar said.

Speaking of the lack of legislation to make Pakistan's law more effective, the chief justice said that there was a "dire need to modernise the country's laws".

"This country was not handed over to us as charity, there was a whole movement which led to its creation. Sacrifices were made for it, but do we value this country at the moment?" he questioned.

"Even in this day and age, signatures are forged on documents [and are not caught], how difficult it is to apprehend those culprits?" he asked.

"There are a lot of flaws in this legal system," he said, adding that he does not claim to be a complete qazi and that everyone in the system needs to analyse themselves and see their own flaws [in order to improve the system].

“One bench of the Supreme Court headed by me has wrapped up 7,000 cases, but when we asked a judge of high court he said that only 20 cases had been wrapped up,” the CJ claimed, adding that many cases were "pending before the courts from years and people have been crying and dying but they are not getting justice".

Justice Nisar said that now the time has come to hold judges accountable. "Those judges who issue verdicts in very few cases would also be tried under Article 209," he said.

The top judge remarked that all those judges who sought privileges would now be questioned over their performance, and those who "do not perform will be held accountable".