ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Friday directed the lawyer for intelligence agencies to arrange a meeting of the 11 missing prisoners of the Adiala Jail - who were now in their custody - with their families.
A three-member bench of Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Ghulam Rabbani and Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday was hearing a petition against the mysterious disappearance of the Adiala jail inmates facing terrorism charges after their acquittal by a trial court.
Following the court's order, Raja Muhammad Irshad, lawyer for Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and the Military Intelligence (MI), submitted a written statement with the court conceding custody of the missing prisoners.
After receiving the written statement, the court adjourned hearing until the first week of January.
The mystery of 11 prisoners, who had been missing from Adiala jail since their acquittal from terrorism charges in May, finally ended on Thursday, when the counsel for the two premier spy agencies told the court that they were in their custody. According to Irshad's statement, the agencies had 'recovered' the men from terror camps, adding that they were now being interrogated for masterminding terror campaigns and after that they would be tried under the 1952 Army Act.
"These prisoners belong to a well-knit group of terrorists and were taken to their hideouts by persons disguised as spies in areas where the army is currently engaged in an operation against the militants," the statement said.
It said soon after the court had issued notices, the intelligence agencies swung into action and launched an operation against the groups and arrested 20 to 25 terrorists, including the 11 prisoners.
"The prisoners are high-profile terrorists having links with terrorist outfits and mastermind of various terrorist attacks, including a rocket attack on the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex in Kamra, firing anti-aircraft shots at a plane carrying former president Pervez Musharraf, conducting suicide attacks on a bus of an intelligence agency in Rawalpindi and at the main entrance of the GHQ, bomb blasts at the Rawalpindi Parade Lane mosque and killing a number of senior army personnel," the statement claimed.
It rejected the perception that the army, the ISI or any other intelligence agencies was not amenable to the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and said these institutions completely submitted to the constitution and to the authority of the court and always appreciated the role of the court in constitutional governance.
"These agencies are also bound to follow the orders of the Supreme Court," it said. "Certain elements while playing in the hands of the enemies of the country always defame the ISI as if the institution has no respect for the law and always consider themselves above the law," the statement maintained.
The statement requested the court to dispose of the petition, as the prisoners were no longer missing".