Chief Justice of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) Justice Athar Minallah on Tuesday while hearing a petition regarding abduction of senior journalist Matiullah Jan—kidnapped in broad daylight from Sector G-6—directed the Chief Commissioner, Inspector General of Police (IGP) and Secretary Interior to make sure the journalist returns home safely.
The petition has been filed by Shahid Abbasi, brother of Matiullah Jan through Jahangir Jadoon advocate.
“In case he is not recovered, they (the Chief Commissioner, IGP and Secretary Interior) are directed to appear before the court on Wednesday (today),” the order said.
The Chief Justice remarked that the petition is being accepted for hearing for the protection of fundamental human rights and prima facie it looks a case of enforced disappearance.
Members of the Islamabad High Court Reporters Association, Asad Malik, Awas Yousufzai, Aamir Abbasi, Saqib Bashir and others were also present in the courtroom on the occasion in solidarity with their senior colleague.
Matiullah Jan was kidnapped from G-6 when he was returning after dropping his wife Kaneez Sughra at her school. He was due to appear in the Supreme Court on Wednesday (today) after the apex court took suo motu notice of an alleged contemptuous tweet by him.
According to his wife, there were more than five people — some in civilian clothes, others in black uniforms — who forcibly picked up her husband.
Security footage captured by the school where Sughra teaches showed several men force Jan into a sedan outside the main gate.
The footage also showed Jan tossing a mobile phone over the school fence, only for a school teacher to handing it back to a man in uniform.
High Commissioner of Canada, Wendy Gilmour in a tweet on Tuesday, expressed her concern over the abduction of Matiullah Jan and hoped he would return to his family soon. “It is very worrying development; the role of the media in a democracy is crucial and must be protected. I trust that Matiullah Jan will be soon safely reunited with his family,” said Wendy in her tweet.
Meanwhile, Aabpara Police registered First Information Report (FIR) of Matiullah Jan’s abduction on Tuesday. There is a worldwide condemnation of Matiullah Jan’s kidnapping by Amnesty International, Reporters without Borders and even Minister for Science & Technology Ch Fawad Hussain have also expressed concerns over kidnapping of Matiullah Jan and urged the quarters concerned to make all out efforts and use all its resources to recover him from the kidnappers.
The Awami Workers Party also condemned abduction of Matiullah Jan, an upright and outspoken journalist in broad daylight from outside a school in Islamabad. The AWP leadership expressed concerns at increasing incidents of abduction of political and human rights activists, journalists.