Govt counsel gets time to file reply | Pakistan Today

Govt counsel gets time to file reply

The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Tuesday adjourned the hearing of a petition until September 27 seeking release and repatriation of seven Pakistanis illegally detained at Bagram Jail, Afghanistan. Sultana Noon, a fellow of Reprieve in Pakistan, a UK-based organisation, had filed the petition. The organisation works for rights of prisoners all over the world. On Tuesday, standing counsel Malik Karamat Awan appeared in court on behalf of the federal government and sought time to file reply to a civil miscellaneous application filed by the petitioner seeking court’s permission to place on record, affidavits of family members of the alleged detainees and a foreign advocate who had been fighting a legal battle for detainees of Guantanamo Bay, for a better understanding of the matter.
Petitioner’s counsel Sarah Belal insisted that a short adjournment might be given, as she was going aboard. Karamat said that he was unable to submit reply in short time, as he had to consult three ministries. At this, Justice Mamoon Rashid Sheikh adjourned the hearing. On the previous hearing, the standing counsel, on behalf of the federal government, objected to an affidavit signed by American advocate Clive Stafford Smith, a specialist on cases of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay. The petitioner’s counsel submitted that seven Pakistanis had been detained at the Bagram Theatre Internment Camp in Afghanistan without any charge or trial since 2003. She alleged that they were abducted from Pakistan and detained at the notorious US prison in Afghanistan. The seven detainees include Awwal Khan, Hamidullah Khan, Abdul Haleem Saifullah, Fazal Karim, Amal Khan, Iftikhar Ahmed and Younas Rehmatullah.
The counsel said that all seven Pakistanis were being held without access to lawyers and without been informed of evidence against them. She said that some have been abused as well. One prisoner was merely 16 and abducted two years ago at the age of 14. Another was not permitted to speak to his family for six years and believed to be in a grievous physical and psychological condition, she added. The prisoners’ families, present in court, asked the court to secure the immediate release of their loved ones and impose criminal charges against the federal government for violation of Pakistani and international laws. Sarah alleged that federal authorities had a role in abduction and extradition of these citizens to Afghanistan.
She requested that authorities be directed to make representation, as required by law on behalf of the abducted citizens at Bagram Jail and arrangements for their release and repatriation to the country. An application was also pending adjudication through which the court was asked to summon the ISI director general, as the agency had played its role in abduction and extradition of Pakistanis to Afghanistan.
Court extends BoP scammers’ remands: An accountability court on Tuesday extended the judicial remand of former Bank of Punjab (BoP) president Hamaish Khan, former honorary consulate in Kazikistan Seith Nisar and Haris Steel Mills owner Sheikh Muhammad Afzal involved in the BoP scam till August 1.
American nationality holder Hamaish Khan had been charged for issuing loans worth Rs 6.2 billion to Afzal beyond his authorities. Nisar, another beneficiary in the case, had a Rs 930 million liability. The court, while extending the remand, directed the NAB to submit the BoP scam reference by the next date of hearing.
Separately, an accountability court on Tuesday extended the judicial remand of Anwar Khan f/o Superintendent of Police Rana Mansoorul Haq till August 2. The accused had been arrested on charges of misappropriation and fraud in the Canal Motors Scam. He was involved in concealing crime proceeds in connivance with and abetment of the main accused Rana Qaisar Nazir.
Large financial transactions were observed between the accounts of the principal accused, Anwar and his firm namely Speedy Wheels. The accused together collected over Rs 1.2 billion by cheating people through fraud and transferred the money into fake accounts.



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