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Ministry’s appeal against lawyer’s release order rejected

Ministry’s appeal against lawyer’s release order rejected

ISLAMABAD: The Lahore High Court’s Rawalpindi bench on Friday rejected an intra-court appeal filed by the defence ministry against its order that had declared the detention of retired army officer-turned-lawyer Inamur Rahim illegal and directed military authorities to set him free forthwith.

Justice Mirza Viqas Rauf of the LHC Rawalpindi bench had on Thursday declared the detention of Mr Rahim illegal and ordered his immediate release.

The court, while ordering the release of the lawyer, said: “The detention of Mr Inamur Rahim advocate with the military authorities is declared illegal and unlawful. He shall be released forthwith.”

The defence ministry, through Deputy Attorney General Raja Abid, on Friday filed an intra-court appeal against the LHC order.

The LHC registrar office raised the administrative objection that the court’s verdict in a habeas corpus matter could not be challenged.

A division bench of the Lahore High Court comprising Justice Sadaqat Ali Khan and Justice Anwarul Haq Pannun heard arguments of the deputy attorney general against the objections raised by the registrar office.

The bench, after hearing the brief arguments, sustained the registrar office’s objection and rejected the appeal accordingly.

Advocate Rahim’s son, on the other hand, filed an application with the Morgah police station along with the LHC verdict and requested police authorities to implement the court order and get his detained father freed from the custody of army authorities.

Advocate Anwar Dar, the counsel for Mr Rahim’s family, said a panel of advocates, constituted to pursue the abduction case of the lawyer, would file on Saturday a petition seeking contempt proceedings against police authorities.

On Jan 3, Justice Rauf had admitted the petition filed against the detention of retired Lt Col Inamur Rahim who, according to the defence ministry, had been taken into custody under the Pakistan Army Act (PAA) for his alleged violation of the Official Secret Act.

According to an FIR registered against the alleged kidnapping of the lawyer, advocate Rahim had been picked up by unknown people from his residence in Askari 14, which is considered a secure locality, in the garrison city.

The FIR states that Mr Rahim was asleep when unidentified individuals trespassed into his residence and forcibly kidnapped him besides extending threats to the family members.

Published in Dawn, January 11th, 2020

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