Judicial commission for missing persons formed

Published: May 4, 2010
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ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Monday constituted a three member judicial commission for the recovery of missing persons in the country.

The issue is of a sensitive nature with government quarters insisting that those missing were actually people who have joined militant groups. Relatives and independent observers, however, disagree with this. The proposed judicial commission will be headed by an ex-judge of the Supreme Court, Kamal Mansur Alam, and will include Justice (Rtd) Nasira Iqbal and Justice (Rtd) Fazl-ur-Rehman as its members.

The issue of Pakistanis missing abroad was also brought into consideration. A three -member bench led by Justice Javed Iqbal and comprising Justice Sair Ali and Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali also directed the foreign secretary, Salman Bashir, to expedite the process of repatriation of Pakistanis who are imprisoned in Thailand and furnish a report in the court within 15 days on progress in this.

Justice Javed Iqbal also asked the foreign secretary to direct all Pakistani envoys abroad to make appropriate arrangements for the recovery of Pakistanis who in languishing in foreign jails around the world. He also warned the foreign ministry official through the additional Attorney General, K K Agha, that he (the foreign secretary) will be held responsible if the appropriate steps were not taken for the recovery of Pakistanis from abroad and the court “will proceed against him.”

“If we use strict language it is said that the Supreme Court is interfering. But if the state does not solve these issues, then who will” queried Justice Javed. Earlier Justice Javed commented that the judicial commission would be independent, autonomous and powerful. “It will have an access to the spy agencies as well for investigation and recovery of missing persons,” he added. He further said that the Supreme Court will not interfere in the matters of Judicial Commission “but definitely observe its performance.”

Justice Javed Iqbal directed the Attorney General to present all previous cases of missing persons before the judicial commission. Meanwhile Home Secretary Sindh, Kamran Dost appeared before the bench and informed the judges that there were nine cases of missing persons from his province out of which, six people have recovered and the rest are still missing because according to the Joint Investigation Team, two of the persons in this were associated with dangerous militant groups. While giving the details.

Collin Kamran Dost said that Hafiz Jan Muhammad Khan is associated with Lashkere- Jangvi and Abdul Kareem Mehmood is a close relative of Yousan Ramzi and Khalid Bin Sheikh whereas about the whereabouts of Sikander Akash Malah, “even the J I T knew nothing.” Justice Javed Iqbal inquired about Abdul Kareem Mehmood upon which he was informed that the person in question belongs to Balochistan.

“Disappearances of people of Balochistan are the most burning issue of the country. Due this issue, the situation in Balochistan is at its worst” Justice Javed observed. After hearing the arguments of all concerned counsels, Justice Javed expressed hoped that that the judicial commission will work hard for the recovery of missing persons and adjourned the hearing of the case till May 17th.

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