In a significant development, Justice Mohsen Akhtar Kayani, the senior-most judge of the Islamabad High Court, has taken a stern stance on the issue of missing persons, particularly focusing on the non-recovery of missing Baloch students. During a hearing on November 29, he rejected the report of the Prime Minister’s Committee responsible for overseeing the recovery efforts and summoned key government officials for the next hearing, including the Secretary of Interior, Secretary of Defense, Interior Minister, and Defense Minister.
Justice Kayani expressed grave concern over the absence of progress in the recovery of missing persons and remarked that Prime Minister Imran Khan and Interior Minister Anwar-ul-Haq Kakar, being from Balochistan, should have been more sensitive to the issue involving Baloch students. He questioned whether the government would send this matter to the United Nations and subject the country to international scrutiny, emphasizing the need for accountability.
During the proceedings, Justice Kayani rejected the report presented by Assistant Attorney General Osama Ghumman, which outlined six points discussed during the Prime Minister’s Committee meeting. The judge returned the report, stating that it was a matter of shame for the court. Additional Attorney General Munawar Iqbal Dogar appeared before the court during the hearing, and Justice Kayani halted the proceedings during his testimony.
Addressing the court, Justice Kayani emphasized the need for clarity on the case, stating that it was the 21st hearing and the commission appointed to investigate the matter had not made any significant progress. He questioned whether the commission was established merely to endorse judicial decisions.
The judge also urged Prime Minister Imran Khan to take notice of the issue, suggesting that if there were any criminal cases against the missing persons, they should be registered. He stressed the importance of accountability and effective action during the court proceedings.
Justice Kayani’s decision to reject the committee’s report and summon top government officials reflects the judiciary’s commitment to addressing the serious issue of missing persons in Pakistan, particularly in Balochistan. The court proceedings highlight the urgency of resolving the matter and ensuring that those missing are recovered promptly and transparently. The case is closely watched for its potential impact on human rights and the broader political landscape in Pakistan.