LHC orders to make Model Town inquiry report public

Lahore High Court (LHC) three-member bench ordered Punjab government to release the Model Town inquiry report within 30 days.

Earlier Punjab Government had filed an intra-court appeal against the September 21 decision of a single-bench ordering the release of the Model Town inquiry report, authored by LHC Justice Baqar Najafi.

LHC rejected the plea today. The bench under Justice Abid Aziz Sheikh had reserved the verdict on the appeal on November 24.

On September 21, Justice Mazahar Ali Naqvi had ordered the Punjab home secretary to make public the report. The report was authored by LHC Justice Baqar Najafi, on the Model Town killings. The order also stated that a copy of the report was provided to the families of those killed and injured in the 2014 incident.

At least 14 people died and 85 others got injured when clash erupted between police and PAT workers over the issue of barriers put outside Minhajul Quran Secretariat in June 2014.

The victims lawyers and the lawyers of PAT had argued previously emphasising on the point that inquiry report should be released to the victims so that they could know who killed the people and who were responsible.

They said the single bench of Justice Naqvi had ordered publication of the report and termed it judicial proceedings. Being public document, it should be released, they pleaded. They said under Article 19 A of the Constitution, the citizens have the right to know the facts.  

In its appeal, Punjab government had said that the single bench’s decision lacked many legal and technical aspects as the same matter was lying pending before a Full Bench but the bench decided the petitioners plea regarding publication of Model Town incident. The government lawyers argued that why the single bench did not send the matter to the Full Bench, thus, the decision was beyond its jurisdiction. They had prayed the court to set aside the decision.

Protesters of PAT changed slogans against Punjab Government. 

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