SC admits plea over mysterious death of a detainee

The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued notice to Federation and Attorney General for January 30, after admitting a plea for hearing, over the alleged mysterious killing of a detainee, who was facing charges of terrorism under the Army Act.

A three-Judge bench comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Khilji Arif Hussain and Justice Tariq Parvez issued notices on a civil miscellaneous application of Rohila, mother of deceased Syed Abdul Saboor, whose body was recovered in Peshawar on January 21.

The detainee along with his other accomplices had been facing charges of terrorism for their alleged involvement in attacks on sensitive military buildings. The Chief Justice during course of proceedings told Attorney General for Pakistan Molvi Anwarul Haq that it was a very serious issue.

He said according to reports three detainees, being tried under Army Act, had been found dead.

He said that an assurance, over eleven missing prisoners of Adiyala jail who were later traced, had been made by the relevant authorities, saying that they would be tried in accordance with law under Army Act.

Justice Khilji Arif Hussain observed that Saboor seemed to have died in an unnatural way. Tariq Asad, counsel for petitioner, apprised the bench that Saboor was the fourth prisoner who was found dead.

The Chief Justice told him that they did not take decisions emotionally and advised him to show patience. In December 2011, the bench had heard applications of eleven missing prisoners of Adyala Jail and was apprised by the counsel for ministry of defence that they had been arrested in tribal areas in connection with terrorist activities after a thorough search carried out by the law enforcement agencies.

The counsel for ministry also assured the bench that the detained persons would be tried under the Army Act.