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Saturday, July 13, 2024  
07 Muharram 1446  

Poet abduction case: IHC summons secretary defence and interior, slams intelligence agencies

Judge questions rank of sector commander

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) strongly criticized the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), the country’s top intelligence agency, during a hearing on Monday regarding the disappearance of poet Ahmed Farhad.

According to Farhad’s wife, who filed a petition in the IHC seeking her husband’s recovery after he went missing a week ago, the ISI claimed to have no information about his whereabouts. Lawyers Iman Mazari and Hadi Ali Chatha represented the petitioner in court.

The case has sparked widespread outrage, with many demanding government action to locate Farhad and hold those responsible accountable. Known for his progressive views and vocal criticism of the government and establishment, Farhad is a well-known poet and writer.

Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani, presiding over the case, expressed frustration with the ISI’s response, stating that the agency’s conduct went beyond a simple matter and accused them of “running the country” instead of upholding the law.

In questioning the ISI’s claim of having no knowledge about Farhad’s disappearance, Justice Kayani found it hard to believe, highlighting the inconsistency with police records of numerous missing persons. He challenged the agency, asking why they were not taking action despite evidence to the contrary.

The court further emphasized that sector commanders should not be elevated to a position of excessive authority, stating that they were not living on the moon and should not be treated like kings. The judge questioned the rank of a sector commander, suggesting they should be at most an 18-grade officer and not placed on an unattainable pedestal.

The court ordered the investigating officer to record the statement of the sector commander and submit it by the next day. The hearing was adjourned until then, with the court summoning the defense secretary and interior secretary and requesting a report based on the sector commander’s statement to be submitted by the same deadline.

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Islamabad High Court

ahmed farhad shah