LAHORE: The families of PTI activists facing military court proceedings in cases regarding the May 9 violence demanded a fair trial for their dear ones.

Over a dozen family me­­mbers of PTI activists who are currently facing trial before military cou­rts, and their lawyers Rab­biya Bajwa and Abuzar Salman Niazi, addressed a press conference at the Lahore Press Club on Sunday.

Ms Bajwa said that there was a criminal silence over the violation of the basic human rights in Pakistan, adding that they would launch a campaign to wake the people to stand against the violation of human rights and Constitution of Pakistan.

She claimed that the fa­­m­­ily members of those fa­­cing trials in military cou­rts were not allowed to meet the incarcerated persons.

Despite the passage of one month, the Supreme Court has also not constituted a bench to hear petitions regarding civilian trials in military courts.

She said the government had submitted a report to the court, saying that 20 citizens were released, but none of the judges had questioned the government why they were had not been allowed to meet their friends and family during nearly a year in captivity.

She said that trying civilians in was an attempt to sideline a major political party, and discourage political activities in the country.

Mr Niazi said that the Supreme Court should immediately constitute a larger bench to hear the cases of civilians held in military custody to ensure their early release, because civilians’ trials in military courts were “unconstitutional and unlawful”.

He said that the Supre­me Court was again facing a situation where it would have to choose between supporting dem­ocracy and the Consti­tution or the whims of an individual.

He said that past judges had favoured the ‘Doctrine of Necessity’ were not remembered in good terms, but those who stood against it were remembered by history.

Published in Dawn, May 28th, 2024

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