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Pakistan caretaker PM Kakar appears before Islamabad Court in missing Baloch students case

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Islamabad | February 29, 2024 10:54:56 AM IST
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has heard a case related to the the implementation of recommendations of the Inquiry Commission on Enforced Disappearances and a petition seeking recovery of missing Baloch students.

During the hearing on Wednesday, Pakistan caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar ul Haq Kakar appeared as a respondent, according to a report in The Balochistan Post.

During the hearing, Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani reminded Kakar that the state institutions are bound by the law and cannot violate the rights of its citizens. He stated that the state institutions should know how to run the nation without resorting to enforced disappearances.

Kakar claimed that the state institutions are not responsible for the missing persons and blamed 'non-state actors' for the situation in Balochistan. He stated that the state is facing armed rebellion in Balochistan and that the people who claim to represent the missing persons are not sincere in resolving the issue.

During the hearing, Kakar said that they only give a few names of the missing persons while the United Nations has a standard procedure to verify the cases of disappearances, according to The Balochistan Post report.

Justice Kayani asked Kakar if he meant that the judge himself could face enforced disappearance. Pakistan caretaker PM Kakar said he was just mentioned an example and that he was using his name as well.

In the hearing, Kakar called it unfair to accuse the state for enforced disappearances and that the human rights of the people who are killed by the non-state actors are ignored. He said that they give 5,000 names of missing persons. However, they do not seek to resolve the issue, The Balochistan Post reported.

The court said that Pakistan is in a state of war and that the military and other institutions are fighting against the non-state actors. The judge said that it is not providing protection to any non-state actors and there is a specific legal procedure to handle them.

On February 19, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) again summoned Pakistan's caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar while hearing a petition seeking the recovery of missing Baloch students, as he failed to appear before the court, The Nation reported.

Presided over by Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani, the IHC single bench conducted a hearing regarding the implementation of the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances and a petition seeking the recovery of missing Baloch students.

Attorney General for Pakistan Mansoor Usman Awan represented the government during the hearing. Justice Kayani inquired about Pakistan caretaker PM Kakar's absence, to which Awan mentioned the PM's engagements in Karachi, as per The Nation.

The court, questioned the absence of defence and interior ministers, emphasized the urgency of addressing the petition filed in 2022, which led to the formation of a commission for enforced disappearances. According to The Nation, Justice Kayani expressed concern over the delay in recovering individuals who have no criminal records. He highlighted that the summons issued to the prime minister aimed at scrutinizing the state's accountability in enforcing its duties.

Last week, Baloch activist Mahrang Baloch has said that the tragic killing of a Baloch labourer by the Pakistani Coast Guard in Gwadar's Jewani underscores the alarming lack of safety for Baloch people in Balochistan. She said that Baloch people continue to face grave human rights violations on their own land.

Mahrang Baloch urged human rights organisations to closely monitor and address the incident. Baloch's statement comes after a Pakistani coast guard killed the labourer by hitting their speedboat onto his kayak, The Balochistan Post reported.

In a post shared on X, Mahrang Baloch stated, "The tragic killing of a Baloch labourer by the Pakistan Coast Guard in Jewani, Gwadar, underscores the alarming lack of safety for the Baloch Nation in Balochistan. The Baloch people continues to face grave human rights violations in their own land. We call on human rights organizations to closely monitor and address this incident."

According to The Balochistan Post report, a protest erupted in the Kuntani Hor area of Balochistan's Gwadar on Saturday, after the Pakistani coast guard killed a local Baloch labourer at sea. The dead body of the victim of the Coast Guard could not be recovered from the sea.

Earlier in December, the Baloch Yakjehti Committee (BYC) had organised a massive long march to raise their voice against the issue of enforced disappearances. This long march had witnessed massive participation from every corner of Balochistan. The march had started in Turbat, reached Quetta, and eventually ended in Islamabad.

On January 23, the Baloch Yakjehti Committee (BYC) announced ending their sit-in outside the National Press Club (NPC) in Islamabad against enforced disappearances, Pakistan-based The News International reported.

At that time, Mahrang Baloch said they will head back to Balochistan with pain, suffering and anti-Baloch attitudes of Islamabad. The decision of Baloch Yakjehti Committee came a day after NPC Islamabad registered a complaint with the Kohsar Police Station requesting to remove the Baloch protesters from the open park in front of the NPC. (ANI)

 
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