CJP says 'will not leave those responsible for APS tragedy'

Published August 4, 2020
The CJP assured the parents that "carelessness would be dealt with according to the law". — File photo
The CJP assured the parents that "carelessness would be dealt with according to the law". — File photo

The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered that a copy of the judicial inquiry report on the Army Public School (APS) Peshawar carnage be provided to the Attorney General of Pakistan Khalid Jawed Khan and also directed him to ask the government for instructions regarding the next step.

A two-member bench, comprising Chief Justice of Pakistan Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Ijazul Ahsan, heard the proceedings on the suo motu case. During the hearing, the chief justice remarked that "we will not leave those who are responsible for the APS tragedy" and expressed sympathy with the parents.

Following extensive proceedings spread over almost 20 months, the presiding officer of the commission Justice Mohammad Ibrahim on July 9 had submitted the report to the CJP.

The six-volume report of the judicial inquiry commission was presented in the top court during today's hearing. The parents of martyred students of the 2014 APS carnage requested the court to provide a copy of the report [to them], to which Justice Ahsan replied that it was a "secret report which could not be given to them yet".

"We have not read the report ourselves. We will see after the government's response is received. There can be no contradiction on this. We will take action according to the law and the Constitution," the CJP remarked.

"Whatever happened should not have happened," he said.

He assured the grieving parents that "carelessness would be dealt with according to the law".

"There is rule of law in the country [...] We will not let go of anyone who was responsible. Parents should have confidence in the judiciary," he added.

Read | View from the courtroom: After APS judicial inquiry, parents pinning hopes on Supreme Court

The top court directed the attorney general to ask the government for instructions and brief the SC regarding the next steps.

The case was adjourned for four weeks.

The judicial inquiry commission was constituted on Oct 12, 2018, by the Peshawar High Court on the order of the Supreme Court and it had started functioning on Oct 19, 2018.

The commission’s spokesman told media persons that it had recorded statements of 132 persons, 31 of whom were police and army officials whereas rests of the 101 were witnesses, including injured students and parents of the martyred children. The commission had also examined different investigations conducted by police as well as security agencies.

Then-Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar had taken notice of the issue in April 2018 when during his visit to Peshawar several of the parents of the deceased students had approached him. Subsequently, on May 9, 2018, a SC bench headed by the chief justice ordered conducting of an inquiry into the occurrence through a judicial commission comprising a PHC judge.

Opinion

Editorial

Police Lines bombing
Updated 31 Jan, 2023

Police Lines bombing

Where the menace of terrorism is concerned, the government and opposition need to close ranks and put up a united front.
Oil price hike
31 Jan, 2023

Oil price hike

THE record single-day increase in petrol prices, preceded by massive currency depreciation, signifies the ...
Babar Azam’s award
31 Jan, 2023

Babar Azam’s award

BABAR Azam might not have lifted many trophies as Pakistan’s all-format captain in the last year but the star...
Blatant Islamophobia
Updated 30 Jan, 2023

Blatant Islamophobia

Muslim extremists and terrorist outfits are emboldened by hateful acts.
Modern slavery
30 Jan, 2023

Modern slavery

MODERN slavery is a wide-ranging term that can encompass a multitude of scenarios. Common to all of them, however, ...
Remarkable Sania
30 Jan, 2023

Remarkable Sania

BRINGING to a close a career in which she smashed stereotypes, Sania Mirza delivered almost the perfect ending in ...