PESHAWAR: A Peshawar High Court bench on Monday sought comments from federal ministry of defence and provincial home department in a petition filed by father of a detainee, kept in an internment centre without any trial for two years.

The petitioner, Sahibullah, a resident of Swabi, requested the court to issue directives to the federal and provincial governments either to conduct trial of his son, Waqasullah, if he was charged for any offence or set him free.

A single bench of PHC Chief Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth after preliminary hearing ordered that the respondents including federal ministry of defence and home department should reply to the petition and put forward their point of view.

The petitioner claimed that so far no FIR was registered against his son and he had been interned in Lakki Marwat internment centre without any trial. The petition is filed through advocates Mehwish Muhib Kakakhel and Saifullah Muhib Kakakahel, who stated that the detainee had gone missing and against his disappearance a petition was filed in the high court.

They stated when the government filed reply to the earlier petition, the petitioner came to know that his son was in an internment centre. They argued that the offence committed by the detainee was not known.

They stated that his detention was illegal and against his fundamental/ constitutional rights as well as general principles of human rights. They added that the detention was against dignity of human and without any legal and logical justification.

Formerly, the laws governing the internment centres including Action (in Aid of Civil Power) Regulation, 2011 and KP Action (in Aid of Civil Power) Ordinance, 2019, were declared unconstitutional and in violation of fundamental rights by the high court. However, the Supreme Court suspended the judgment through a stay order.

The counsels requested the court to order the government to produce the detainee in court and treat him in accordance with laws of the land, give him a fair trial if accused of an offence or set him free forthwith.

Published in Dawn, December 17th, 2019