IHC directs govt to expand search for child, father

Court told that Dubai officials find no trace of the suspect


Our Correspondent April 13, 2019
Islamabad High Court. PHOTO COURTESY: IHC WEBSITE

ISLAMABAD: A high court on Friday directed the government to expand its search for a man, who is accused of taking his three-year-old son abroad after developing differences with his wife, to England.

This was directed by a single-member bench of the Islamabad High Court (IHC), comprising Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb, on Friday while hearing a petition filed by the boy’s mother Hina Usman who had filed for custody of the child and had claimed that he had been taken out of the country last year without her consent.

Having directed the Foreign Office and the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to bring back the child from Dubai at the last hearing of the case, the court on Friday was told that the suspect, Muhammad Usman, and the child are no longer in the Gulf city.

The Assistant Attorney General told the court that Dubai authorities had visited Usman’s given home and office addresses in the United Arab Emirates but found no trace of him.

A representative of the Interior Ministry told the court that Usman had travelled from the UAE on March 13, while his passport had been blocked seven days later on March 20.

The court was further told that apart from blocking his passport, the FIA has also blocked Usman’s Computerised National Identity Card (CNIC).

At this, the court directed the government to write to the Pakistani High Commission in England to search for Usman, regardless of where he may have travelled to from Dubai.

Justice Aurangzeb then turned to the boy’s mother and urged her to provide any information she may have which could offer clues as to Usman’s whereabouts.

The court adjourned further hearings in the case until next Friday.

Suspects acquitted

A district and sessions judge in three separate cases of drugs and murder, acquitted three people, including a woman, of all charges after the prosecution failed to prove their case.

The first case was registered at the Tarnol police station, against Muhammad Iftikhar in September 2017, for possessing drugs.

The Tarnol police, though, could not conclusively prove their accusations against Iftikhar. The court, after recording the suspect’s statements and reviewing available evidence, the court acquitted him.

Separately, in a case registered by the Noon police on October 21, 2017, Shameel was accused of possessing over a kilogramme of narcotics.

The Noon police, though, were unable to conclusively prove their case and the suspect was acquitted by giving her the benefit of doubt.

In another case, Qasim was booked in a case registered on July 14, 2017, for the murder of Zahidullah in the federal capital.

Based on the testimonies of witnesses, arguments of the defence counsel and the evidence presented, the court ruled that it could not be conclusively proved that the suspect had killed the victim and acquitted him. 

Published in The Express Tribune, April 13th, 2019.

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