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‘Who is responsible for enforced disappearances; is there state within state?’ asks Justice Minallah

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  • IHC CJ says no efforts being made for missing persons’ recovery.
  • Justice asks what is govt committee doing for their recovery.
  • He adds PM should make it clear whether he is helpless or not.

ISLAMABAD: Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Athar Minallah asked Friday who was responsible for enforced disappearances of people and wondered whether there was a “state operating within the state.”

Justice Minallah’s questions came during the hearing relating to the disappearance of journalist Muadassir Naro and five other people, where the deputy attorney-general appeared before the court.

The IHC chief justice asked the deputy attorney-general that in the court’s previous order, the relevant authorities were asked to produce the disappeared people. “Where are they?”

At this, the deputy attorney-general told the IHC that the federal government has constituted a committee for the missing persons and the relevant investigation agencies are employing efforts to recover them.

“Don’t involve this court in the matters of committees. Tell me whether you will implement the [orders] or not? Where is the federal government?” the justice asked.

The IHC CJ said people are being picked up every day and nothing is being done about it.

He added that in the previous order, the court asked the federal government to issue notices to ex-president General (retd) Pervez Musharraf and the prime ministers succeeding him.

“Where are the notices and their affidavits?” he asked.

Read more: Nothing more painful than state’s own involvement in crime, says IHC CJ

In the order issued last month, the IHC directed the federal government to serve notices to Musharraf and all other successors — the former prime ministers, including the incumbent holder of the office.

The IHC CJ noted that the matter of missing persons was “gravely serious” and the “attitude of the federal government was not commendable”. He asked whether the constituted committee holds meetings.

Justice Minallah said if the court’s order continues to go unheard, then the incumbent interior minister and the former interior ministers will be summoned. The IHC CJ went on to say how would it feel like if the court summons the chief executive — the prime minister.

IHC’s top judge said that all the governments were violating their oath when the matter of missing persons should be among the top priorities for the national leadership. 

In response to the IHC CJ, the deputy attorney-general said in the next hearing, the government’s stance would be presented as to what it is doing for the recovery of missing persons.

“No efforts are being employed for the recovery of missing persons,” the IHC chief justice lamented. He added that although just for show, the federal cabinet constituted a committee for the missing person, what efforts have they employed so far.

The IHC CJ asked who should be held responsible for the missing persons and questioned whether there was a “state operating within a state”.

“There are allegations levelled against the police, Intelligence Bureau (IB), the intelligence agencies of armed forces. There are several missing persons, tell me, which of these agencies has picked them up?”

The IHC CJ said the prime minister should either say that he is helpless and if he is not, then the Constitution of Pakistan will hold him responsible.

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The IHC upholds Bushra Bibi’s request to be transferred from Bani Gala to Adiala Jail.

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Bushra Bibi’s request to be transferred from Bani Gala to Adiala Jail was granted by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday.

The former first lady Bushra Bibi’s application to be transferred from Bani Gala sub-jail to Adiala was heard today.

Details reveal that the Islamabad High Court heard a motion to restore the denied petition about the relocation of Bushra Bibi, the wife of PTI founder, from sub-jail Bani Gala to Adiala.

The application for the reinstatement of appeal was heard by Justice Miagul Hassan Aurangzeb. When state attorney Abdul Rehman entered the courtroom on behalf of the state, Usman Riaz Gill represented the former first lady.

State counsel did not object to the appeal being restored during court proceedings. At the following hearing, the court asked for assistance in determining what conditions must be met for a location to be designated as a sub-jail.

The court also mandated that Bushra Bibi’s medical examination be scheduled. The court subsequently delayed the hearing and gave instructions to fix the appeal for April 22.

Recall that the attorneys for former first lady Bushra Bibi, Barrister Salman Safdar, Usman Riaz Gill, and Khalid Yusuf Chaudhary, had filed an application to restore the dismissed appeal a day ago, but the Islamabad High Court had denied their request to pursue the case.

The petition contended that the traffic gridlock at the Sarina Chowk checkpoint was the reason for the delay in getting to the court.

The attorneys did not purposefully take their time getting to court. They warned that the petitioner would suffer irreversible loss if the petition was not resurrected.

IHC Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb has voiced his displeasure at the absence of attorneys from the court.

According to Judge Aurangzeb, the former first lady would have been imprisoned if Bushra Bibi’s attorneys had prevailed in this case. The attorneys themselves were opposed to Bushra Bibi’s incarceration.

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oath-taking ceremony for the Balochistan cabinet postponed

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The Balochistan cabinet’s oath-taking ceremony, which was supposed to take place at the Governor’s House today (Thursday), has been rescheduled.
The Governor’s House spokeswoman announced that the Balochistan cabinet’s swearing-in event has been postponed. Nevertheless, there was no explanation provided for the ceremony’s postponement.

It is important to note that the 14-member Balochistan cabinet, which consists of two members from the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) and six ministers from the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was set to take the oath of office today, Thursday.

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PMD forecasts rain throughout the majority of the nation.

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During the next 24 hours (Thursday–Friday), the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) has predicted rain, windstorms, thunderstorms, and a few torrential downpours or hailstorms throughout the majority of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan, Kashmir, Islamabad, Punjab, and Balochistan.

In several areas of Sindh, a rain-windstorm/thunderstorm is anticipated. Much of Balochistan is being hit by a powerful westerly wave trough, which is expected to spread to the top regions by April 18.

Prolonged downpours have the potential to cause flash flooding in Balochistani local streams and drains, particularly in Gwadar, Jiwani, Pasni, Ormara, Kech, Awaran, Kharan, Panjgur, Washuk, Noshki, Lasbela, Khuzdar, and Kalat.

On April 18–20, heavy rains could cause flash floods in tributaries of the Kabul River as well as in Dir, Swat, Chitral, Kohistan, Manshera, Gilgit–Baltistan, Kashmir, and other areas.

Lower Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Murree, Galiyat, Kashmir, and Gilgit-Baltistan are among the regions where landslides may occur.

At this time, standing crops, power poles, cars, solar panels, and other objects may sustain damage from wind, hail, and lightning, according to meteorologists.

Upper Sindh and Balochistan saw rain, wind, and thunderstorms in the past 24 hours. During the era, there were also significant rainfalls in South Balochistan. Wednesday’s highs of 42 degrees Celsius in Mithi kept it as the country’s hottest spot.

Officials reported that lightning-related storm-related occurrences claimed the lives of at least 65 people in Pakistan, where the rate of precipitation in April has so far been roughly twice that of previous years. Floods and house collapses were caused by heavy downpours that occurred between Friday and Monday. Lightning claimed 28 lives.

32 people, including 15 children, have killed and over 1,300 homes have been damaged in northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which has suffered the greatest victim count.

The meteorological experts report that there is little probability of rain, despite the fact that drizzle fell in numerous areas of Karachi.

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