The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday deferred hearing of a petition of High Court Bar Association (HCBA) Multan seeking recovery of a missing lawyer namely Muhammad Yafis Naveed.
A single bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah heard the petition for recovery of Muhammad Yafis Naveed. During the hearing, Justice Athar Minallah inquired from the SHO if he has read the court's verdict in a similar matter wherein the court wrote on July 11, 2018 that "enforced disappearance is one of the most cruel and inhuman acts and categorized as a crime against humanity."
In the said judgment, Justice Minallah had maintained that the act of enforced disappearance may also attract provisions of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 and for the first time in Pakistan's history penalized a retired general and several civilian officials in the case of a missing person.
The IHC bench held that it is the duty of the Special Branch, Intelligence Bureau, the Inter-Services Intelligence and the Military Intelligence to collect information and promptly report to the concerned functionaries regarding any incident of abduction of a citizen having the characteristics of an 'enforced disappearance' and to take effective measures in tracing the whereabouts of the victim. It is noted that these instrumentalities of the State are part of the JIT constituted under the Regulations. In the case of failure in fulfilling this duty, the respective sector commanders shall expose themselves to being accountable and proceeded against.
The court gave this verdict in the case of a missing person Sajid Mehmood - an IT expert and a resident of F-10 who has been missing since March 2016. He is father to three daughters while his wife had filed a petition for the recovery of her husband. She also submitted applications seeking allowance on account of monthly household expenses from the federal government till her husband is recovered. On Monday, the SHO in response to the court's question replied that he had not read the said judgment.