PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court Chief Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhel has again questioned the security barricades that have been placed on various roads of Peshawar and have created problems for its residents.
On Thursday, a bench comprising Chief Justice Miankhel and Justice Qaiser Rashid Khan was hearing a case on the closure of a route by the Frontier Constabulary (FC) which connects FC Chowk with Civil Quarters. They expressed their displeasure over the blockade and the problems it has caused people.
Chief Justice Miankhel remarked that the security institutions have created a state within a state, while Justice Qaiser Rashid questioned how a road that has been in use for decades can be so abruptly closed to the general public.
The bench was informed by Advocate Amir Sabir, who is also the petitioner, that the decision had badly affected the inhabitants of several localities, including, Kotla Mohsin Khan, Nothia Jadeed, Nothia Qadeem, Landi Arbab, Dehri Baghbanan and Gulgasht Colony. Sabir added that not even women or children are allowed to walk on the street anymore. He said most students and government servants used the route while going to educational institutions and offices and returning home.
The FC commandant’s counsel, Umar Zafran, told the court that a rocket had landed inside the colony just a few days ago. He said the route has been blocked because it goes inside the colony, but he claimed that pedestrians are allowed to use the way.
The bench directed Zafran to inform his clients to reopen the road and added that the court had already issued an order in the case earlier.
On May 30, a bench comprising Justice Nisar Hussain Khan and Justice Musarrat Hilali had sought comments from the FC commandant and deputy commandant in a writ petition challenging the closure. The bench ordered them to reopen the route till the next order was passed.
In a separate case, the same bench directed the ministries of interior and defence to submit their replies in a missing person’s case.
According to the writ petition, Gul Zada was picked up on May 11, 2011, by Colonel Syed Waqas and Naib Subidar Gul Khan of the 66th Frontier Force Regiment, and SHO of Kanjo police station in Swat. The petition said that the detainee was earlier picked up by Captain Shehzad of the 29th Punjab Regiment and Major Adnan of the 9th Sindh Regiment, but was released because no case was proven against him. The petitioner added that it is in their knowledge that Gul Zada has been detained at Fizagat Internment Centre, but his family was not allowed to meet him.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 11th, 2014.