ISLAMABAD: The federal government informed the Supreme Court on Friday about the establishment of a fact-finding committee tasked with probing the involvement and directives of all relevant officials in the administration of the Faizabad sit-in.
Attorney General Mansoor Usman Awan submitted this information as part of an implementation report to the apex court.
The report, provided by the government, disclosed that the committee has been constituted in accordance with the Supreme Court’s decision dated February 6, 2019, to pinpoint those responsible for the 2017 sit-in.
During the latest hearing on September 28, the three-member bench led by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Qazi Faez Isa had expressed dissatisfaction over the prolonged non-compliance with the court’s order, while reviewing petitions against the verdict regarding the 2017 Faizabad sit-in organized by the TLP against the then-Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government. The bench instructed all parties to submit their written responses by October 27.
On a previous day, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had also presented its implementation report to the Supreme Court, adhering to the court’s prior directive.
In the report, the ECP affirmed, “Based on the records already provided, respondent no. 3 [TLP] is not engaged in any terrorist activities and is not proscribed.”
“We believe that respondent no. 3 [TLP] is not involved in any anti-state activities or terrorism, thus, at this point, the case is considered as withdrawn,” it further stated.
The implementation report clarified that the fact-finding committee is composed of senior officials from the interior and defense ministries, as well as the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).
The terms of reference for the investigative panel dictate that it will gather evidence related to the Faizabad sit-in, scrutinize all evidence, documents, and records pertaining to the case, record witness statements, and evaluate the matter in accordance with relevant laws, regulations, and policies. Additionally, the committee will ascertain the roles and directives of all parties involved in managing and handling the situation, submit a report with recommendations, and address any other pertinent aspects of the issue.
As per the implementation report, the committee will also determine who issued orders and oversaw the Faizabad sit-in. The committee is expected to deliver a report based on its findings following the investigation to the Ministry of Defense by December 1.
If the committee requires additional time, it will seek an extension from the defense ministry. The report also informed the Supreme Court that the committee’s initial meeting took place on October 26, in line with the specified terms of reference.