ISLAMABAD    -   The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Thursday directed Shahzad Akbar Prime Minister’s Advisor on Accountability and Interior to appear before the court on September 21.

A single bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice of IHC Justice Athar Minallah issued these directions during the hearing of petition filed against the alleged ‘abduction’ of Sajid Gondal additional joint director of SECP.  The IHC bench also directed the Inspector General (IG) of Police and the Chief Commissioner, Islamabad Capital Territory or the Deputy Commissioner to appear before the court on the next hearing. It also directed the office to send notices to the Vice Chairman, Islamabad Bar Council and President, Islamabad High Court Bar Association for assistance. 

During the hearing, Tariq Mehmood Khokhar Additional Attorney General (AAG) informed the court that Asmat Begum’s son namely, Muhammad Sajid Gondal has returned and that investigation is in progress. 

The court stated in its order that Shahzad Akbar is a member of this Bar and his functions obviously, inter-alia, include advising the Prime Minister on the abysmal state of governance and criminal justice system within 1,400 square miles of Islamabad Capital Territory. 

It observed that the AAG is expected to brief the Advisor regarding the questions raised in the connected petitions. 

It added, “Shahzad Akbar, Advisor to Prime Minister on matters relating to Ministry of Interior is directed to appear at 1:00 p.m. on 21.09.2020 and explain whether any advice has been tendered to the worthy Prime Minister regarding the deplorable law and order situation in the Capital of Pakistan and security of ordinary citizens.” 

The AAG informed the bench that a detailed briefing was given to the Prime Minister and members of the Federal Cabinet in the meeting held on 08.09.2020. The Federal Cabinet decided in the said meeting to probe the alleged abductions from the area of Islamabad Capital Territory. He also told that pursuant to the said decision a committee has been duly notified. 

Justice Athar noted, “The abysmal law and order situation in the Capital of Pakistan is intolerable. As noted by this Court in its order, dated 07.09.2020, that fundamental rights of the ordinary citizens are being violated and their confidence in the criminal justice system is being eroded.  Land related crimes, such as land grabbing, have become an unchecked widespread phenomenon and shockingly, Ministries/departments and State entities are allegedly involved. 

They are engaged in the illegal real estate business. This raises a serious question of conflict of interest.”