The Sindh High Court has told the police to fully protect lawyer Maqboolur Rehman, who has been allegedly receiving threats for pursuing missing persons cases.
Hundreds of people are missing in Pakistan. Rights watchdog Amnesty International has made public evidence, in the form of official court records and affidavits of victims and witnesses to prove the point that these enforced disappearances were cases of abductions by security forces.
Rehman has gone to court seeking protection because he says he has been intimidated, harrassed and threatened in an attempt to scare him off from pursuing such cases. Some men have even chased him on his way to work and home, as a result of which he is unable to open his office and do his professional duty.
Rehman runs an NGO, World Reform Commission, which provides people legal aid. He practises on the criminal side, and has worked a number of high-profile cases.
His petition says that six months ago he sent a request for security to the Karachi Bar Association and CID police. The CID sent it to the SHO of Risala police station but nothing has been done so far. Rehman also went to the Sindh High Court Bar Association of which he is a member.
The petition comes on a day when a lawyer, Waheedur Rehman, was targeted, leading Rehman to argue that he will not be able to offer people legal assistance unless he is given security. The petition names the home secretary, IGP, DIG (Investigations) and DIG (Operations), who the court has asked to appear along wth the advocate general of Sindh immediately after Eid.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 2nd, 2011.
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