ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court Wednesday rejected the Ministry of Defence plea to transfer case of in-service Major Haider, whose real name is Major Muhammad Ahsan Ali, to military authority for trial and ordered the police to interrogate him regarding the matter.

The police on the complaint of Abida Malik, the wife of Tasif Ali, on November 23, 2011 had registered an FIR 386/13 against Major Haider (original name Major Muhammad Ahsan Ali) at Sadiqabad Police Station, Rawalpindi.

Abida Malik claimed Major Haider of the Military Intelligence (MI) took away her husband in 2012 over some dispute, and since then she had no information about him. Abida's father Dr Aslam had told the police that he had met personally with Major Haider, who got annoyed over a business dispute with his son-in-law.

A Divisional Bench headed by Justice Nasirul Mulk and also comprised Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed hearing the case said that they would take up the petition for issuing contempt cases for military officers for their involvement in the case at a later stage.

Additional Attorney General Shah Khawar, appearing before the court submitted a letter, written by Military Intelligence to the Punjab police. Through the letter the Military Intelligence had communicated to the Deputy Inspector General of Police Lahore (Investigation) to shift the case against Major Ali for trial under the Pakistan Army Act.

The MI expressed in the letter, "Subject case against Major Muhammad Ali Ahsan is being investigated by your department - In order to comply the orders of the Supreme Court, the competent authority has decided to take over the case from your department- In this connection your attention is drawn to Pakistan Army Act Section 94, read in conjunction with Army Regulations (Rules)-373."

The letter further stated, "Foregoing in view above mentioned case file may please be transferred to this Headquarters for trial under Pakistan Army Act (PPA)."

Upon that Justice Nasirul Mulk said there were charges against Major Muhammad Ali that he was involved in the enforced disappearance of Tasif Ali.

When the AAG sought time to take instruction from the Defence Secretary, who was presently abroad, to assist the court in the case, Justice Azmat remarked how many adjournments you would seek in order to prolong the case. He also said no seriousness was seen in the letter of Ministry of Defence.

Ibrahim Satti, counsel for Military Intelligence, contended if the police wanted to investigate Major Muhammad Ali then they have to write to the Commanding Officer. Justice Nasir stopped him from arguing the case and asked him it was not his concern as the investigation was the job of police. The judge further told him there was a case of an individual officer and not of MI before the court.

During the proceedings, petitioner's counsel Col (retd) Inam-ur-Rahim informed the court that once an FIR is registered against in-service army officer then according to the law police have power to interrogate him, and the army authorities were bound to hand over the accused to the police for investigation.

He said in this case not only an FIR had been registered against serving Major of army, but the Punjab police have written 11 letters to the relevant military officials, but they had responded to none of them. He said Major Haider, whose real name is Major Muhammad Ali Ahsan, had been transferred to Awaran in Balochistan.

Col (retd) Inam informed the court that he had also filed a contempt petition against four army officers including Lt Gen (retd) Asif Yasin Malik, Secretary Ministry of Defence, ex-Chief of Army Staff General (retd) Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, Lt-Gen Rashid Mehmood, Chief of General Staff, and Lt Gen Mazhar Jamil, Military Secretary, GHQ, Rawalpindi, as they had misled the court, misreported and concealed the real name of the accused and Major Muhammad Ali was presented as Major Haider. The court said they would see the matter in the next hearing.

The court directing the police to investigate Major Muhammad Ali adjourned the case till March 10.

FSC TO RESUME HEARING IN RIBA CASE FROM MARCH 24

The Federal Shariat Court has decided to resume the hearing of remanded Riba case from March 24, 2014 in the principal seat Islamabad.

In previous hearings, the views of two prominent juris-consults Dr Tahir Mansuri and Dr Ayub of Ripha University had been heard.

It is pertinent to mention here that the august Supreme Court had directed the Federal Shariat Court to reconsider the views of contemporary jurists of Muslim world. In compliance, the questionnaire prepared by the office had been sent to Dr Wahba Zuhaili, Dr Sami Ibrahim Al-Suwailum, Dr Muhauiddin Al-Qarah Daghi and Dr Ajeel Jasim Al-Nashmi seeking their views in the light of Quran and Sunnah.

The views of Dr Wahba Zuhaili and Sami Ibrahim Al-Suwailum have so far been received while the views of Muhaiuddin Al-Qarah Daghi of Qatr and Ajeel Jasim Al-Nashmi of Kuwait are still awaited.

On March 24, 2014, the views of Attorney General, Advocate Generals will be heard apart from prominent juris-consults and subject specialists.

The questionnaire prepared by the office has already been sent to respective petitioners, institutions, juris-consults and subject specialists. Through public notice, published in all leading newspapers of the country, the views of ulema, lawyers and general public have been sought and we have received comments from the experts of Islamic economic and fiscal system.