Missing IT engineer: New year brings no news for distraught family

Investigation officer tells IHC that no progress has been made in locating engineer

Our Correspondent January 03, 2017

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court Tuesday ordered the police official heading a Joint-Investigation Team (JIT) probing the disappearance of a software engineer from the capital, to appear before the court in person on January 13.

The direction came after the investigation officer of the case, Abdul Rasheed, told the single member bench, comprising Justice Athar Minallah, that no progress could be made in tracking the whereabouts of the missing software engineer.

Sajid Mehmood, a software engineer, has been missing for the past eight months. His wife Mahera, also a software engineer, filed a petition in the IHC through her counsel Umer Gilani in which she alleged that her husband was “abducted from their home in F-10/1 amidst circumstance which strongly suggests that this is a case of enforced disappearance.”

While expressing dissatisfaction with the police’s progress, Justice Minallah directed the SP Investigation Islamabad to personally appear in court on next date of hearing and report on the progress made by the JIT, which he is heading.

The JIT had been constituted upon the directions of the Missing Persons Commission and includes representative of the police and the intelligence agencies. Petitioner Mahera Sajid through her counsel Umer Gilani, had made the Station House Officer of the Shalimar police station, Inspector General of Police, secretaries of Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Defense, DG Intelligence Bureau, Inter-Service Intelligence Directorate and the Military Intelligence.

Recently, Gilani moved two more applications requesting the IHC to direct the respondents to recover petitioner’s husband and direct state to provide reasonable maintenance for as long as the state, police and the intelligence agencies cannot recover him as he was the primary bread-winner of the family.

The police have already admitted its inability to find the missing man and the Inspector General of Islamabad Police has submitted the interim report of JIT disclosing that no substantial progress could be made towards locating the missing person’s present whereabouts and recovering him.

Following the hearing, the case was adjourned till January 13. Adulteration in food items and medicines.

Separately, Justice Minallah issued notices to the Islamabad district administration alongside other respondents after a petitioner sought court’s intervention about rampant adulteration in food items and medicines in the capital.

Petitioner Muhammad Kowkab Iqbal advocate has prayed to the court to direct the government to set up food and drug authority to check the menace.

Referring to the Food and Drug authority in USA, Iqbal said that there was rampant adulteration in all items ranging from salt, peppers, milk, meat and medicines. He also referred to news reports which pointed out that 20 brands of mineral water were found contaminated.

He has made secretary federal ministry of health, secretary interior, secretary ministry of food and drug regulations, secretary law and secretary cabinet division, chief commissioner and deputy commissioner as Islamabad respondents.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 4th, 2017.


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