ISLAMABAD: Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday sought a report from the defence ministry on alleged harassment of Baloch students and directed secretaries of Ministry of Human Rights and Senate to appear before the court in person and explain reasons why a meeting of the commission formed to probe into grievances of Baloch students had not yet been held.

Hearing a petition filed by lawyer and activist Imaan Zainab Mazari-Hazir, the court observed: “The grievances of the students of Balochistan enrolled in educational institutions are not groundless.” Previously, the IHC had ordered formation of a commission to probe into the matter.

According to the order sheet, authored by IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah, “the grievances of the students, who belong to the province of Balochistan, are grave ... racial profiling and treating citizens differently is one of the most grave violation of guaranteed fundamental rights.”

The court instructed secretary (Ministry of Interior) to submit a report before the next proceeding and explain why grievances of Baloch students had not been attended to.

Justice Minallah ordered defence secretary to submit a report regarding the progress of disciplinary proceedings against the official who had visited Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, to inquire about Baloch students.

The court expected from the additional attorney general to ensure that a report was submitted before the next hearing, which was adjourned till July 5.

Published in Dawn, June 28th, 2022

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