ISLAMABAD    -       The Islamabad High Court (IHC) will Monday (today) resume hearing of a petition seeking recovery of missing Sajid Gondal Joint Director of Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) who went missing on Thursday night.

A single bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice of IHC Justice AtharMinallah will conduct hearing of the petition filed by Asmat Begum, the mother of the missing senior official of the SECP who had approached the court seeking recovery of her son from ‘unknown’ abductors.

Previously, the IHC Chief Justice had warned that action would be taken against the Secretary Interior, the Chief Commissioner and the Inspector General (IG) of Islamabad if they failed to trace the whereabouts of Gondal.

He added that in case the responsible public functionaries failed to produce Gondal before the court on Monday at 2pm, the interior secretary, the chief commissioner and the inspector general of Islamabad would appear in person in court to explain why they might not be proceeded against for their inability and failure on part of the federal government and the administration of the Islamabad Capital Territory to protect citizens from harm.

The court also issued notices to the above-mentioned officials and ordered that a copy of the order be sent to the secretary of the cabinet division. The latter would place copy of this order before the federal cabinet in its next meeting if the responsible officials are unable to either produce the SECP official or fail to trace his whereabouts.

Petitioner’s counsel Barrister Jahangir Khan Jadoon informed the court that some unidentified persons allegedly kidnapped the SECP official from the Shahzad Town area of the capital on Thursday at about 9pm.

He said that the kidnappers left Gondal’s official car outside the National Agriculture Research Center (NARC) on Park Road, which was recovered by police on Friday.

The petitioner contended that she is an old lady and a respectable citizen of Pakistan. She added that her son had attended the office on Sept 3 and returned home in the evening. At about 7.30pm, Gondal went out of his home situated at Shahzad Town, Islamabad, on his official vehicle bearing registration No GAE 496, but never came back. His car was found parked on Main Park Road, near National Agriculture Research Centre office, Islamabad.

She stated that Gondal’s whereabouts were not known even after the passage of two days and the petitioner being a poor person was moving from pillar to post in search of her son. It said the petitioner along with another relative visited the police station and approached the station house officer (SHO) of the Shahzad Town police station, but police authorities were reluctant to give any clue about her missing son.

“The petitioner is clueless what to do and helpless due to her inability to find out her son,” the petition said, adding that the petitioner wanted to bring the matter to the notice of this court through this writ petition seeking to protect her fundamental right.

She expressed apprehensions that her son may be put to mental and physical torture as his whereabouts are unknown and his life is also in danger. According to the petition, the missing person [Sajid Gondal] is a government servant and there are chances that he has been picked up by unknown persons in connection with his official duties.

The petitioner regretted that police had failed to perform their duty and seemed to be reluctant to make serious efforts for the recovery of her son. “Abduction is against the fundamental and constitutional rights of the petitioner as guaranteed under Articles 4, 9 and 10-A of the Constitution,” the petition asserted. She prayed to the court to summon the respondents namely secretaries of defense and interior, inspector general of police and Shahzad Town SHO in person and direct them to produce her missing son before the court. The petitioner also requested the court to issue directive for the interior secretary to take action against those who failed to protect the life and dignity of citizens.