–Justice Isa says such centres are illegal after KP-FATA merger
ISLAMABAD: The federal government on Thursday submitted a “detailed list of internment centres in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the Supreme Court as it took up appeals against a Peshawar High Court verdict that had rendered these centres “unconstitutional”.
A five-member bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khosa had ordered the government to submit a detailed list of the prisoners.
During the proceedings, Attorney General Anwar Mansoor informed the court that the internment centres were set up in 2011 and claimed that these “centres were constituted for psychological treatment and rehabilitation of the terrorism offenders”.
However, Justice Qazi Faez Isa objected to the reply and said it didn’t contain the response of the Defence Ministry, which represents the Pakistan Army. The copy of the Ministry of Defence’s reply will be provided to the court soon, the attorney general replied.
“It is the biggest case of contemporary history,” Chief Justice Khosa said, adding the court “review the status of these centres and the constitutionality of the Action (in Aid of Civil Powers) Ordinance and take a decision”.
After the 25th Amendment –that pertains to merger of tribal areas into the mainstream — the law has become void, said Justice Isa.
However, CJP Khosa said these matters needed to be reviewed.
“If 1000 people inflict harm on one million, then the rights of one million should be protected,” the AGP said.
“I will stand with the one if he is being punished against the law,” Justice Khosa remarked, adding: “Prove your stance in arguments, the matter will be decided after detailed arguments.”
The bench adjourned the hearing of the case till Friday.
In Oct, the PHC had struck down the Actions in (Aid of Civil Power) Ordinance promulgated by Khyber Pakhtunkhawa Governor Shah Farman on August 5, 2019, and declared it a violation of “fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution”.