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Supreme Court action against IO for producing handcuffed suspects in court

KARACHI: The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the release of five persons charged with kidnapping a minor girl and suspension of the investigation officer of the case for producing the suspects in handcuffs in court.

It also directed the deputy inspector-general of police, Sukkur region, to recover the girl, missing since July 13, and produce her in court on Sept 4.

A division bench comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry and Justice Sarmad Jalal Osmany was seized with a petition filed by Saleem Khoso seeking recovery of his seven- or eight-year-old daughter, Sakina. He stated that Sakina had gone missing on July 13 within the remit of Sukkur City police station and he had lodged a kidnapping case against five persons.

However, he stated, the police failed to find any clue to his daughter.

Sukkur Region DIG Dr Ameer Sheikh appeared in court on Monday along with the five suspects and submitted that according to the investigation report, the FIR was lodged by the complainant on Aug 13 after a delay of one month.

He said it was being apprehended that the girl had drowned in the Dadu canal. Quoting from the investigation report, the DIG claimed that the petitioner might have tried to implicate the nominated suspects due to personal enmity as no evidence of their role in the girl’s disappearance was found.

Ordering the release of the suspects, Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry expressed his displeasure over the investigation officer’s act of producing the suspects in handcuffs in court, and observed that police officials were neither familiar with court decorum nor did they seem to be willing to improve their performance. Instead, they put innocent people behind bars, he added.

Directing the DIG to immediately suspend the investigation officer, the bench asked him to recover and produce in court the missing girl on Sept 4.