SC disposes of Dua Zehra case after father withdraws petition

SC disposes of Dua Zehra case after father withdraws petition

ISLAMABAD— The Supreme Court disposed of the Dua Zehra Case after her father withdrew his application.

Dua Zehra’s father Syed Mehdi Ali Kazmi had filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against the decision of the Sindh High Court that ruled out the abduction of his daughter.

The father claimed that the Sindh High Court allowed Dua to exercise her free will based on her statement and medical test that puts her age between 16 to 17 years. The Court ignored her educational certificates and National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) record that states her age as 14 years, the petition said.

He had contested that the high court judgment that said that Dua is “at liberty to decide as to with whom she intends to reside and go along” needs to be reviewed by the Supreme Court.

On Thursday, a three-member bench comprising Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar and Justice Muneeb Akhtar heard Mehdi Kazmi’s appeal at the Supreme Court Karachi Registry.

During the proceeding, Justice Muneeb Akhtar asked the petitioner’s counsel what their appeal in the high court was. The counsel replied that they had requested for the recovery of Dua Zehra and her custody.

The justice remarked the court has summoned her and recorded the statement as well, in this way the request had served its purpose.

Justice Sajjad Ali Shah remarked that the two high courts had recorded Dua Zehra’s statement in which she had said that she had left the house of her freewill.

When the girl herself has said that she was not abducted then there is no, still the high court acted cautiously, said Justice Shah.

Dua’s father had claimed that his daughter had given the statement under duress.

Dua made a statement in front of everyone in the high court. She has been saying over and over again that she has got married of free will and was not abducted, Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar remarked.

The justice questioned, “If Dua Zahra says again that she wants to live with her husband then what will you do?”

Zehra’s father said the high court did not allow him to meet with his daughter, he met her in the chamber just for five minutes that even in the presence of police.

Justice Shah asked Ali Kazmi that “If the SC allows his to meet him daughter for six to eight hours would it be fine?”

Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar said that parents should be allowed to meet their daughter and be satisfied. What if Dua again refuses to go with them, what they will do?

Later, the court dismissed the petition after Ali Kazmi withdrew his appeal.

The court said the case does not come under its jurisdiction, however, Dua’s parents can approach an appropriate forum for the formation of medical boar.

Talking to media outside SC Karachi Registry, Mehdi Kazmi’s counsel Jibran Nasir said that the court has asked us to approach relevant forum for the formation of a new medical board.

Our appeal was to send the girl to the shelter till the case is decided and for the formation of a medical board, he said.

We have taken back our request, Jibran said.

He said that the court has remarked the medical report determining Dua Zehra’s age can be challenged. The counsel said that the SHC decision will not be a hurdle in this regard.

We will file an application for the formation of a new medical board, he said.

The SHC had ruled that per a medical report by the board constituted by the police surgeon to determine the girl’s age, she was between 16 and 17 years of age, with her age more than 17.

Based on this and the teenager’s testimony that she had gone of her free will and contracted marriage in Punjab under the laws of the province without any pressure or coercion, and allowed her to exercise her free will.

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