Supreme Court of Pakistan questions Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan over inaction against APS perpetrators. The SC on Wednesday ordered the federal government to take action against officials who had shown negligence in the APS tragedy and asked Prime Minister Imran Khan regarding the steps taken by the incumbent government to bring those responsible to justice.
The three-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed, instructed the government to submit a report – signed by the premier – in this regard in four weeks.
CJP asked PM Imran Khan that what steps were taken by the state to provide justice to the parents of the martyred children?
PM Imran Khan further said former Prime minister Nawaz Sharif should have tendered resignation after the carnage.
The prime minister replied he was not in the government at that time.
“Now you are in power, what steps have been taken to bring the culprits into the court of law,” the CJP (Chief Justice Pakistan) asked.
Justice Qazi Amin remarked that media reports are showing that the incumbent government is holding talks with the banned outfit TTP (Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan).– National Media Reports.
The attack on the Army Public School in 2014 shook the nation to its core. The militant assault on December 16, 2014, martyred more than 145, most of them school students.
Soon after the attack, a national consensus was achieved and the National Action Plan (NAP) was drafted to curb the rampant spread of terrorism in the country. The military, in successive campaigns, wrestled back control of areas in erstwhile Fata which had become a hotbed of militant activity.
During the last hearing of the case, the apex court had asked the attorney general to inform the bench regarding steps taken by the government to redress the grievances of the martyred children’s parents.
“There is no sacred cow in the country and I believe in the supremacy of the law,” Prime Minister Imran Khan said before SC after being summoned in the Army Public School (APS) Peshawar massacre case.
Court summons PM Imran
The premier, after being summoned to the apex court, arrived in the courtroom and was accompanied by Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid and Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry.
During the hearing, Justice Ejazul Ahsan remarked that schoolchildren were a soft target for terrorists and it is not possible that such a massacre can be carried out without inner support.
The CJP also questioned the workings of the country’s intelligence apparatus and wondered why the people are not protected and added that the children of the country can not be left to die in schools.
“Action was taken against the watchmen and soldiers. Action should have been taken from the top against those who later left with salaries and privileges,” the CJP observed. Justice Ijazul Ahsan further remarked that it was not possible that the terrorists were not aided from within.
During the hearing, Justice Gulzar inquired from the attorney general whether a case had been registered against the then army chief and other officials.
“There is no finding in the inquiry report against the former army chief and DG ISI,” the attorney general replied.
The country has a large intelligence apparatus and billions are spent on the agency which is claimed to be the best in the world, said the CJP.
Counsel of the martyred children’s parents, Amanullah Kanrani, said the “right of Qisas belongs to parents and not the state” and further pleaded that the state cannot compromise in the current scenario.
The CJP then observed that the court had given a clear order in the case and asked the attorney general to “listen to his conscience”.
The attorney general replied that the orders of the court are “acceptable” and he will “not defend anyone”.
Earlier, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhary announced that the interim Afghan government-backed talks between the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) with both sides agreeing to a complete ceasefire.
The ceasefire began on November 9 and will run until December 9, unless both sides agreed to an extension.