ISLAMABAD, Nov 26: The Military Intelligence (MI), one of the premier intelligence agencies of the country, reiterated its stand before the Supreme Court on Tuesday in the Tasif Ali missing person case that the military personnel involved in any offence should be tried under the Pakistan Army Act, 1952.
The MI Directorate had pleaded before the court on June 11 that an army official and a subject of the Army Act should not be investigated or inquired into by police or even by the Supreme Court.
The stand taken by the MI came before a Supreme Court bench comprising Justice Nasirul Mulk, Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Iqbal Hameedur Rahman that had taken up an application of Abida Malik, wife of Tasif Ali alias Danish.
Her application accuses a serving MI officer, Maj Ali Ahsan, earlier known as Maj Haider, for allegedly being behind the enforced disappearance of her husband whose immediate production before the court has been sought.
Tasif Ali is believed to be a Hizbul Mujahideen activist who went missing on Nov 23 last year, and was allegedly picked up by Maj Ahsan. His last phone conversation was with Maj Ahsan who was then a captain posted at the MI-918, Mangla Cantonment.
The matter was reported to the Sadiqabad Police Station on Dec 5 and was heard by the Lahore High Court on March 19, but the case was dismissed.
In her complaint, Ms Malik alleged that harsh words had been exchanged between her husband and the caller, believed to be Maj Haider, during a conversation at about 4pm on Nov 22 last year. The next day her husband went to offer Juma prayers and had since been missing.
Tasif Ali had started a furniture business before his disappearance.
The Supreme Court had already ordered Defence Secretary retired Lt Gen Asif Yasin to cooperate with the police in their investigation to find the whereabouts of the missing man as well as the military officer who had allegedly abducted him.
Advocate Mohammad Ibrahim Satti, representing the intelligence agency, informed the bench that the MI Directorate had written a letter to the Supreme Court in which it had again denied that Tasif Ali had been apprehended or held in custody.
Advocate Satti told Dawn that the letter would be filed before the court in a day or two. He said the directorate was of the view that since an FIR had been registered against a serving military officer, evidence should be provided to the authorities concerned so that the case could be initiated against him under the Army Act.
The letter denied that Maj Haider had ever served in the MI set-up in Mirpur as claimed by the wife of the missing man.
The letter was sent by the MI Directorate to the Defence Ministry Legal Director’s Office in Rawalpindi.
The proceedings were postponed because Additional Attorney General Tariq Mehmood Khokhar was in Lahore to appear in another missing person case before a Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.
A day earlier, retired Col Inamur Raheem, representing Abida Malik, had moved a contempt of court application before the Supreme Court against the top defence hierarchy for allegedly impeding police investigation to shield and protect accused Maj Ahsan.
The counsel had named the defence secretary, army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, Chief of General Staff Lt Gen Rashid Mehmood and General Headquarters Military Secretary Lt Gen Mazhar Jameel as respondents.
On Nov 8, the apex court had turned down a government request to constitute a new joint investigation team (JIT) comprising intelligence agencies’ representatives to solve the mystery of the missing person.