The Supreme Court of Pakistan issued a directive on Saturday, mandating the federal government to provide a written undertaking, signed by senior officers of concerned ministries, to ensure adherence to legal protocols in cases of detentions.
During the hearing of petitions related to missing persons, the three-member bench, led by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Qazi Faez Isa and comprising Justice Musarrat Hilali and Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar, also instructed the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances to present detailed information about the missing persons to the apex court.
The Commission must collate and submit comprehensive details, including names, addresses, disappearance dates, recovery status, and efforts to locate missing individuals. The bench further requested disclosure of the Commission’s budget, staff, and resources, citing the public’s right to information under Article 19A of the Constitution.
Addressing lawyer Aitzaz Ahsan’s plea concerning missing persons, the court clarified that the petition’s scope would be restricted to missing individuals, as those who have returned cannot be categorized as missing for habeas corpus writs.
The Court also expressed its concern over the recent police mistreatment of Baloch protestors in Islamabad, emphasizing the fundamental right to peaceful protest, which must be respected in both letter and spirit. The apex court condemned any high-handedness in handling such protests.