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Missing persons: Pak court issues notice to ISI chief

October 31, 2012 13:25 IST

A Pakistani court has issued notices to the chief of Inter Services Intelligence and several government officials over the recovery of the body of a man, who was allegedly tortured to death after being detained by police and spy agencies, asking them to explain how the 'missing person' died.

A two-judge bench of the Peshawar high court led by Acting Chief Justice Miftahuddin Khan issued the notices on Tuesday to ISI chief Zaheer-ul-Islam, the federal interior secretary and the home and tribal affairs secretaries of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province.

The bench directed the officials to submit written replies and explain the cause of the death of the 'missing person' who was allegedly detained by the security agencies.

The court acted after an application was filed by one Haji Mir Aslam. He said four personnel of security agencies in plain-clothes and armed policemen raided his home on August 24 and took away his son Zahoorullah in a car.

The man said police handed over the body of his son after two months. "We examined the body, which had been severely tortured," he said.

Aslam said his son worked as a labourer in the Paper and Cotton Mills and had no links with militant organisations.

"My son's murderers should be brought to justice," Aslam told the court.
 
Additional Advocate General Ubaid Razzak, who appeared on behalf of the officials, sough more time from the court. The bench fixed November 29 for the next hearing of the case.

In another missing person's case, Razzak informed the bench that a man's body was found in Haripur on the outskirts of Islamabad, along with the bodies of two others in June.

The missing man's body bore no visible marks or injuries though his neck had been broken and an arm had injection marks.

The bench is hearing the cases of 53 'missing persons'.

It has put on notice the interior ministry, defence ministry and intelligence agencies, including the ISI and military intelligence, in a majority of these cases and directed them to submit replies before November 29. 

Rezaul H Laskar
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