KARACHI: The Sindh High Court on Thursday directed the federal secretaries of interior and defence to collect fresh reports about missing persons from all internment centres and agencies under their control.

The SHC asked them to ensure that such reports be filed at the next hearing and warned the officials that in case of non-compliance, they will have to appear in person.

The bench expressed dissatisfaction over the performance of a joint investigation team and a provincial task force (PTF) for missing persons and directed the authorities to repeat the sessions of JIT and PTF before next hearings and submit reports to the court.

A two-judge bench, headed by Justice Naimatullah Phulpoto, issued the directives while hearing a set of petitions seeking recovery of missing persons. It said the progress reports filed by police were carefully perused and most of them were found to be lacking in substance.

In some cases, the bench observed, the deputy attorney general filed reports on the behalf of the defence and interior ministries in which they denied the allegations about custody of the individual. The federal law officer sought time in some other cases to collect fresh report from the ministries.

The court then directed the secretaries of interior and defence to collect and submit reports from all agencies under their control on the next hearing.

Published in Dawn, May 24th, 2024

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