Supreme Court of Pakistan – File Photo

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Friday summoned the Chief Secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) and the Federal Defence Minister to appear before the court on February 13, DawnNews reported.

A three-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, was hearing the case of the ‘missing persons’ believed to be illegally detained by the intelligence agencies.

During the hearing today, the bench had ordered the agencies to produce the remaining seven ‘missing persons’ still alive by today or face legal action.

It was reported that four of the seven detainees were released from Peshawar’s Lady Reading Hospital on Friday and were being sent to Islamabad. The other three, who were known to be held at a detention centre in Parachinar, were also being transported to Islamabad but could not reach on time due to bad weather, it was told.

However, the court waited till 5:30pm and adjourned the hearing till Feb 13 after the ‘missing persons’ could not be produced.

In addition to summoning the Defence Secretary and Chief Secretary KPK, the court also ordered the detainees to be produced at the next hearing.

The bench advised the Director-General Inter Services Intelligence (DG ISI) to ensure the security and presence of the seven remaining ‘missing persons’ at the court hearing on Feb 13.

During the hearing, the chief justice said in his remarks that if the prime minister could appear before the SC, why could anyone else not be able to do so?

Earlier during the day, counsel for the intelligence agencies Raja Irshad informed the SC that four of the 11 detainees had died, while four other were currently under treatment at a hospital in Peshawar.

The three remaining persons were at a detention facility in Parachinar, said Irshad, and that they could not be presented in court.

Rejecting Irshad’s position, the chief justice ordered the agencies to produce the detainees in court by the evening, or face legal action.

An official at the Lady Reading Hospital had told Dawn that four people, who were among the 11 prisoners who went missing from Rawalpindi’s Adiala jail, were brought to the hospital in precarious condition and doctors there had no chance to save them.

The four detainees — Mohammad Aamir, Tehseenullah, Said Arab and Syed Abdul Saboor — had died in mysterious circumstances at the hospital over the past few months.

The official had also said that another four detainees presently undergoing treatment at the medico-legal ward of the hospital were also brought in a “bad shape”.

The SC, in its last order, had categorically told Raja Irshad to produce all those ‘missing people’ who were arrested and have been kept under illegal detention.

Irshad had responded to the court by saying that he was unable to escort the detained people as some of them are not in good health. However, the court had rejected his plea by signifying that the relatives of the missing persons do not have an issue with the situation and will appreciate their presence in the court.