RAWALPINDI: The Rawalpindi bench of the Lahore High Court on Monday directed police authorities to produce former interior minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed within a week or face consequents.
In the previous week’s hearing, the court had given Rawalpindi police a final opportunity to chase and recover Sheikh Rashid Ahmed who is also the chief of Awami Muslim League (AML).
Justice Sadaqat Ali Khan presided over today’s hearing, with Rashid’s counsel and Regional Police Officer (RPO) Syed Khurram Ali appearance. The RPO submitted an investigation report, which the court rejected. The court ordered the RPO to recover the PTI ally within a week, warning of potential case registration against all involved officers if the deadline is not met.
The judge expressed strong dissatisfaction, stating, “You have crossed your limit. A case will be registered against the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Operations, the Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), and four Station House Officers (SHOs) responsible for Rashid’s arrest.”
Judge Sadaqat also requested affidavits from Rashid’s lawyers regarding his arrest. The counsel claimed to have video evidence of their client’s arrest at his home and subsequent transfer to an intelligence office in Golra Sharif. The court also sought videos of Rashid’s transfer to the intelligence office.
Meanwhile, Rashid’s nephew Sheikh Shakir and employee Sheikh Imran, who were detained along with him, have been released.
Last week, the LHC had expressed displeasure over the former interior minister’s detention, giving authorities until October 2 to recover him. The court warned of strict action against the force if the deadline was not met.
Justice Sadaqat, from the Rawalpindi bench of LHC, had reprimanded the RPO for the failure to locate the veteran politician.
Rashid was reportedly taken from his home on September 17 by purported Rawalpindi Police personnel and officials in plain clothes. However, the Rawalpindi Police spokesperson later denied the arrest, claiming Rashid was not in their custody. Since then, he has been missing.