23 September 2020
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The Islamabad High Court issued on Thursday notices to the interior secretary, IG Aamir Zulfiqar Khan, and Deputy Commissioner Muhammad Hamza Shafqat in the case of an IT engineer who was picked up from his house in 2016.

Mahera Sajid, the wife of the missing Sajid Mehmood, filed on Wednesday a contempt petition as her husband remains missing even though in 2018 the court ordered the authorities to produce him.

The respondents have been directed to explain why contempt proceedings should not be heard against them.

Chief Justice Athar Minallah has directed the interior secretary to identify the officials responsible for the non-implementation of the court’s 2018 judgment.

Sajid Mehmood, an IT professional, was picked up from his house in Islamabad’s F-10 on March 14, 2016. His wife approached the court seeking justice for her husband.

In July 2018, the court ordered law enforcement and intelligence agencies to produce the missing person. This was the first time the court remarked that the Special Branch, Intelligence Bureau, Inter-Services Intelligence and Military Intelligence must promptly report all incidents of “enforced disappearances” and trace them.

It ordered that Mehmood’s family should be given a monthly compensation and fines were imposed on the Shalimar police station SHO, IG, DC and retired three-star Lt Gen Zamirul Hassan Shah, the secretary of the defence division, for “neglecting their duty” and not cooperating with the court.

The judgment in Mehmood’s case was recently cited by the high court in its order in the case of Sajid Gondal, according to Gilani. Gondal, an official of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, reached home five days after he went missing but Mehmood’s family still awaits his return.

Committee to investigate ‘enforced disappearances’

The Ministry of Interior approved on September 14 the constitution of a committee to “deliberate on the reasons behind the enforced disappearances and give recommendations on how to control,” according to the notification signed by Deputy Law Secretary Khalid Mahmood Khan.

The committee will comprise the law and justice minister, human rights minister, PM’s adviser on accountability, Islamabad IG, and representatives of the ISI and IB.

Abdul Gh Lone