Twelve people who were previously missing have been identified and are being tried at tribal courts, the Frontier Corps (FC) informed the Peshawar High Court (PHC) on Wednesday.
The federal government informed a PHC division bench comprising Chief Justice Dost Muhammad Khan and Justice Roohul Amin that the Ministry of Defence and secret agencies are following the May 29 court orders. Deputy Attorney General Muzammil Khan requested the bench to adjourn the case hearing. A detailed reply will be produced before the court in two weeks.
The bench, hearing around 108 habeas corpus petitions filed by relatives of missing persons, accepted the plea and adjourned the hearing - but not before telling the authorities to consider this a final warning.
The petitions have been filed by relatives of the missing who blame security agencies for abducting their family members and keeping them in illegal custody.
During the hearing, Deputy Attorney General Muzammil Khan said ground checks were underway in accordance with the May 29 orders. A list has been prepared, informed the deputy attorney, adding that it cannot be shared since the federal defence ministry and agencies are compiling a detailed reply.
Khan requested the hearing be adjourned till June 27.
The bench said the detailed reply will help identify more missing persons. It also pointed out the court would never allow violations of human rights guaranteed under Article 199 of the Constitution, adding that immediate and concrete results were necessary.
“We, in any case, never want militants to be free but everyone should be treated in accordance with the law of the land,” said CJ Khan. The law does not permit detaining people outside internment centres.
FC Major Farrukh told the court, Lal Mand, who was also previously missing, was shifted to an internment centre in Landikotal where 11 others have already been interned. The 11 detainees face trial against allegations in tribal courts. The major added the men would be released once proven innocent.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 6th, 2013.
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