ISLAMABAD: Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief JusticeAthar Minallah on Friday asked the secretaries of defence and interior, sector commanders of intelligence agencies and the commissioner of the federal capital to trace a missing person and produce him before the court on Oct 3 or appear in person in the court.

Justice Minallah was hearing a petition filed by Mohammad Akram who is seeking the recovery of his son, Munir Akram.

According to the petition, Munir was allegedly picked up from the jurisdiction of the Noon police station on August 20.

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Akbar Nasir Khan appeared before the court and stated that the police had registered the first information report (FIR) the same day.

IHC chief justice orders relevant secretaries, commissioner, intelligence officials to appear in person if man not recovered

He said the police contacted all intelligence agencies to trace the whereabouts of the missing person but to no avail. He, however, said efforts were being made for his recovery.

Justice Minallah expressed displeasure over the stereotype response of the IGP.

“It is happening within the jurisdiction of Islamabad and is happening too often; this is intolerable,” he remarked.

“Who picked them from the jurisdiction of this court, why Counter-Terrorism Departments (CTD) of other provinces are working in Islamabad,” he inquired from the IGP.

The inspector general could not respond to the question but assured the court that “no stone would be left unturned to trace the whereabouts of the petitioner’s son”.

The court directed the sector commanders of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Military Intelligence (MI), Intelligence Bureau (IB) and the chief commissioner Islamabad to trace the missing person and produce him before the court on Oct 3 or appear in person the same day.

“In case the whereabouts of the petitioner’s son are not traced till then, the aforementioned officials shall appear in person to explain the state failure in tracing the whereabouts of the person who was alleged to have been abducted by officials in uniform from this court’s jurisdiction,” the chief justice said.

Further hearing in the matter was adjourned till Oct 3.

Police claimed to have recovered a missing person on Sept 14 after Justice Minallah gave a deadline of 24 hours for his recovery and directed the sector commanders of the top spy agencies and the chief commissioner to appear in person in case the court order was not complied with.

When presented before the court, Justice Minallah asked the citizen, Hamza, who had abducted him and where he was taken to. He replied that since he was blindfolded he did not know who were his abductors.

Hamza’s father Zulfiqar Ali, however, told the court that he had received a call from his son that he was standing near a hospital.

Earlier, Justice Minallah while hearing the case related to the arrest of Dr Shireen Mazari asked the government to investigate the arrest of Senator Irfan Siddiqui over a petty issue, journalist Matiullah Jan and others and sought a report till Oct 24.

Additional Attorney General Barrister Munawar Duggal told the court that the inquiry commission constituted to probe these incidents would submit its report to the cabinet. He requested the court to adjourn further hearing for three weeks.

Published in Dawn, October 1st, 2022

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