Centre, provinces told to produce Taliban in court -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Centre, provinces told to produce Taliban in court

LAHORE: Lahore High Court Chief Justice Khwaja Muhammad Sharif on Friday directed federal and provincial governments to make necessary arrangements for production of 12 arrested Afghan Taliban before the magistrate concerned as required under the law.

The chief justice issued this order while hearing two identical petitions challenging possible extradition of 12 Taliban arrested from different parts of the country.

Earlier, petitioners’ counsel argued before court that the arrested Taliban had not been produced before a court of law which was a basic requirement under the law.

At this, the CJ directed an additional advocate general, representing the Punjab government and a deputy attorney general, presenting the federal government, to do the needful for the redressal of petitioners’ grievance.

Meanwhile, the interior ministry through a written reply said it had no concern with the subject matter so it should be deleted from the list of parties. The CJ adjourned further hearing on petitions till April 12.

Khalid Khwaja of the Defence Human Rights Commission had filed petitions against the possible extradition of Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, Mullah Abdul Salam, Hakeemuddin-Mahsood, Maulvi Kabir, Ameer Muawiya, Tayyab Agha, Mullah Muhammad, Abdul Qayum Zakir, Mullah Tayyab Popalzai, Musa and Mohtasim Agha Jan.

The petitioner had requested the court to restrain federal as well as provincial governments from handing over detainees to the US or any other foreign country.

He also requested the court to bar foreign agencies from interrogating the Afghan detainees and issue directions that only intelligence agencies of Pakistan should interrogate them because they were arrested from different parts of the country.

The petitioner was of the view that all the arrested persons were Afghan Taliban who never carried out any terrorism activity in Pakistan or elsewhere. He said they were arrested merely for having beard.
Source: Dawn
Date:3/27/2010