Sindh High Court expresses displeasure with police report in missing persons case

JITs and provincial task force failed to produce results, say judges

Our Correspondent February 08, 2019
Sindh High Court. PHOTO: EXPRESS

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) once again expressed its annoyance on Thursday over stereotypical reports being submitted by the law enforcement agencies in a set of pleas filed against the non-recovery of more than 60 missing persons.

A divisional bench comprising Justice Naimatullah Phulpoto and Justice KK Agha remarked that the JITs and Provincial Task Force (PTF) have failed to come up with desired results on the issue of missing persons.

'The heads of security agencies, who appear before the JIT and PTF, should be asked about the whereabouts of the missing men,'' remarked the bench, while directing the provincial home secretary, Inspector-general Sindh police, Rangers Director-General and other officials to submit a progress report by March 6.

The court directed the home secretary to make efforts for the recovery of missing persons by taking a personal interest in all the cases of missing persons. Teams should be sent to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's detention centers to inquire about the missing persons.

The petitioner's counsels argued that Bilal and Sajid were detained from FB Area in 2015. Police made Sajid's arrest public but Bilal is still missing therefore he should be recovered.

Sentence set aside

The same bench accepted the appeal against the death sentence awarded in the murder case of a police official.

SHC seeks progress report on missing persons case

The court remarked that police had failed to provide evidence in the murder case of their own colleague and accepted the appeal filed against the death sentence and annulled the sentences awarded to the accused, Fazal Hussain alias Faqeera and Fayaz alias Faizo. Court ordered that both of them should be released if they are not wanted in any other case.

According to the police, they were accused of the murder of a police official Ashfaq who was posted at Kharadar. Ashfaq was killed by firing in the jurisdiction of Kalri Police Station in 2013.

The special anti-terrorism court awarded both of them death sentence. Since the accused could not afford to hire the services of a lawyer, the court provided them the facility of lawyer through the government resources.

Hearing adjourned

Another two member bench of SHC comprising Chief Justice Ahmed Ali Sheikh and Justice Umar Sial adjourned the hearing of cases filed by Ghulam Mustafa Lund and others about plea bargain and voluntarily return of money due to the absence of Advocate Haq Nawaz Talpur.

Justice Sheikh remarked that the court has information that several officers including some deputy commissioners, who had entered in to plea bargain or voluntarily return of money were still working on important positions.

Additional Advocate General argued that these types of cases are under trial in the Supreme Court. Chief Justice remarked that you should wait because there is extreme discrepancy in this case and the court will summon the Chief Secretary in this case who should present a detailed report regarding their appointments on the next hearing.

Court adjourned the hearing till February 14 due to the absence of Advocate Haq Nawaz Talpur.

Notices issued

A single member bench comprising Justice Junaidul Ghaffar ordered to issue notices to Amir Khan, Nasreen Jaleel and others over the plea filed by Farooq Sattar against his expulsion from Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan. Single member bench comprising Justice Junaid ul Ghaffar heard the plea filed against the exclusion of Farooq Sattar from MQM Pakistan.

Court declared Farooq Sattar's plea filed against the MQM's Rabita Committee was maintainable. Farooq Sattar's counsel argued that the expulsion of his client from the party was contrary to electoral laws and party's rules.

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None of the formalities were fulfilled for the expulsion and the decision of the expulsion only has the signatures of Kunwar Naveed. Court ordered MQM leaders Amir Khan, Nasreen Jaleel and others to submit the reply till February 14th while issuing them the notices.

Plea dismissed

A two-member bench of the SHC on Thursday dismissed a plea of Abdul Ghani Majeed, son of Omni Group head Anwar Majeed, against his arrest warrant issued by National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Chairman in a case relating to allotment of Nahar-e-Khayyam land in Karachi. The bench said that the plea did not deserve to be heard.

The counsel of Ghani told the court that NAB had issued call-up notice in allotment of Nahar-e-Khayyam land and wanted to interrogate Ghani by arresting him.

The counsel pleaded that NAB should be stopped from arresting his client because it had no power to arrest him. The counsel appealed to the court to approve pre-arrest bail for Ghani, but the court rejected the plea.

Bail extended

Another two-member bench of SHC on Thursday approved extension in interim bail of former Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah till 21st March in a petition related to call-up notice issued by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in case of grant of land to Malir Development Authority (MDA).

The former chief minister appeared before the court along with his counsel Barrister Zamir Ghumro. Shah's counsel submitted that the previous allotment of the said land has already been cancelled.

Shah stated that issuing call-up notice is a political revenge and the NAB is targeting Pakistan Peoples' Party (PPP) due to some political motives. He pleaded that NAB should be stopped from arresting him and its call-up notice should be termed illegal.

According to NAB prosecutor, there are two inquiries under investigation against Qaim Ali Shah. Prosecutor said that Investigation officers of both the inquiries are present in the court but NAB has not been provided with the copy of reply submitted by the accused.  The court directed the Shahs counsel to provide copies to the NAB prosecutor.

Additional reporting by PPI

Published in The Express Tribune, February 8th, 2019.

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