LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Friday directed the police to produce a man it arrested in the disappearance case of two friends –- SSP Mufakhir Adeel and Advocate Shahbaz Tatla.

Advocate Zaid Sarwar Bhatti filed a petition for recovery of his brother Asad Bhatti from alleged illegal custody of the police.

Petitioner’s counsel Aftab Iqbal Chaudhry stated before the court that Asad Bhatti himself appeared before the police on Feb 15. However, he said, the police detained Bhatti without registration of any case and had subjecting him to “physical torture to extract a statement of its choice.”

The counsel contended that the detainee was a diabetic and cardiac patient and his life was in danger at the hands of the police.

He said police had kept him in illegal detention because he was yet to be produced before any court of law, in violation of his fundamental right enshrined in the constitution.

He asked the court to get the brother of the petitioner recovered from the illegal custody of the police.

After hearing the arguments, Justice Waheed Khan ordered the CIA Model Town SP to produce the detainee before the court on Feb 24.

SSP Adeel and Tatla, a former assistant advocate general of Punjab, have been missing since Feb 7 last. As per media reports, Bhatti, a common friend of both, told police that Adeel had murdered Tatla and disposed of his body by throwing it in a drum of acid.

The police identified Bhatti from a CCTV footage that showed him sitting beside the police officer, who is still at large. The police also recovered SSP Adeel’s official jeep from Johar Town area.

Published in Dawn, February 22nd, 2020