RAWALPINDI: The Lahore High Court (LHC) here on Tuesday sought comments from the defence ministry on a petition filed by a former officer of Pakistan Navy who is on the death row.
Justice Malik Shahzad Ahmed of the LHC’s Rawalpindi bench asked the defence ministry secretary to submit a written comment in seven days in response to the petition filed by ex-lieutenant Hammad Ahmed Khan. Khan was sentenced to death by a navy court.
The petitioner has prayed the court to direct the relevant authorities to provide him with copies of the trial and investigation documents so that he could prepare an appeal against his capital punishment.
He has further prayed to the court to restrain the naval authorities from taking any adverse decision against him till the final disposal of his petition.
A field general court-martial in May 2016 handed down the death sentence to Hammad and five other navy officers for their hand in a terrorist attack on the Naval Dockyard in Karachi on September 6, 2014.
Khan through his lawyer Inamur Rahim has contended that he was arrested soon after the attack on the dockyard.
The petitioner said that the naval court handed down the death sentence to him in May this year without giving him facility of a lawyer. He said that the military authorities also did not provide him with an officer to assist him during the investigations.
He said that after his conviction, he filed a petition before the naval authorities asking for copies of the charge-sheet, investigation report, inquiry report, the summary of evidence and trial proceedings as he wanted to file an appeal before the court.
The petitioner informed the court that on June 7, 2016, the naval authorities refused to give him the documents citing sensitive nature of the case.
The authorities, however, asked his lawyer to see the documents in a navy ship in Karachi.
On July 8, the petitioner again asked the authorities to provide him with other documents that were not of sensitive nature but did not get any response.
The petitioner further maintained that his father had also asked the naval authorities to shift the court of appeal to Islamabad from Karachi but got no response.
The petitioner prayed to the court to ask the military authorities to provide him with the relevant documents enabling him to prepare the appeal against his conviction.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 14th, 2016.
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