The Lahore High Court on Tuesday directed the interim Punjab government to ensure that contact is established between incarcerated PTI leader Hassaan Niazi and his father within a fortnight.
The order comes on a petition filed by Hassaan’s father, Hafeezullah Niazi, who petitioned the court to recover and allow a meeting with his son, who is in military custody.
Hassaan, a barrister and nephew of PTI chairman Imran Khan, was in hiding after the May 9 riots. He was arrested from Abbottabad on August 13 and handed over to the military for trial over his alleged involvement in the attack on the Lahore corps commander’s house.
On August 15, Hassaan’s father, Hafeezullah, filed a petition in the LHC seeking recovery of his son.
Two days later, a military official wrote to the police, requesting it to hand over Hassaan’s custody to the military for “trial by the court martial”.
Before the LHC began hearing the father’s plea, the police submitted a report in the court on August 18, detailing the offences in which the former was found to be allegedly involved.
The report was submitted by Punjab Additional Advocate General (AAG) Ghulam Sarwar while Justice Sultan Tanveer presided over the hearing.
The AAG informed the LHC in the hearing, “Hassaan Niazi has been handed over to the military”. He added that Hassaan was “named in the Jinnah House attack case and was a main suspect”.
The interim Punjab government told LHC in the hearing on August 26 that visiting a suspect in military custody was not allowed under any law.
Additional Advocate General Ghulam Sarwar Nahang stated in the hearing that the SC had already taken note of the trials of the May 9 suspects in military court and the question of the suspects’ meeting with family members was also pending before it.
He said proceedings in the high court on the same question of law would complicate the matter.
On September 28, barrister Faiz Ullah Khan Niazi submitted that 45 days have passed and since then the petitioner has been unaware of the whereabouts of his son.
In today’s hearing, a single-member bench comprising Justice Sultan Tanvir Ahmad ordered the Punjab government to establish contact between Hassaan and his father within a fortnight.
According to the written order, a copy of which is available with Dawn.com, the petitioner’s lawyer told the court his client would be satisfied if he was allowed to establish contact with his son.
According to the order, the government officials maintained that since the matter is still pending adjudication before the apex court, it is “in the fitness of the circumstances to adjourn the case till the decision is passed by the Supreme Court”.