PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court (PHC) Chief Justice Dost Muhammad Khan questioned the legal grounds for the release of senior Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, Express News reported on Thursday.
Justice Khan made these remarks during the hearing of the missing persons case.
The PHC chief justice said such a decision cannot be taken without a court order, adding that neither the prime minister nor the president has the authority to order the release of such a high-profile criminal.
Pakistan announced Baradar’s release on September 20 but sources say he is still kept in a safe house and is closely watched by his Pakistani handlers.
It was earlier reported that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif agreed to a demand by Afghan President Hamid Karzai for direct access to the Taliban leader at the trilateral summit held in London.
Afghanistan believes Baradar, who was once a close friend of the reclusive Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar, has enough clout to persuade the Taliban to make peace, but his prolonged stay in Pakistan may have marred his reputation among fighters.
Justice Khan said if the court is not given a satisfying report over the issue of missing persons and measures taken in this regard till the next hearing, a larger bench will be constituted to hear the case.
The hearing was adjourned till December 10.