SHC expresses concern over defective investigation in criminal cases

The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Wednesday expressed concern over defective investigations in criminal cases and directed the Karachi police chief to improve the investigation department’s performance with the help of modern techniques.

Hearing bail applications in criminal cases, a single bench of the SHC comprising Justice Amjad Ali Sahito observed that several culprits had to be acquitted in criminal cases due to defective investigations.

The high court observed that police should have a standard investigation system from Karachi to Kashmore and appropriate budget should be allocated to the police stations for the purpose of investigation.

The bench asked the Karachi police chief to improve the police investigation system and appoint competent and dedicated officers in the investigation department.

The Karachi police chief informed the SHC that 80,000 crimes were reported in Karachi yearly and police were trying to improve their investigation process. He said that investigation officers were being trained with modern investigation techniques and assured the high court of improving the investigation system in the police.

Missing persons case

The SHC directed a provincial law officer to file comments with regard to payment of compensation to the families of missing persons.

The bench was informed that the court had directed the home department to pay compensation to the families of 12 missing persons whose cases were declared to be enforced disappearances by the joint investigation team. The petitioners’ counsel submitted that the Sindh government had not made payment to the families of six missing persons despite court orders.

The high court had on a previous hearing directed the Sindh government to consider a compensation request in the provincial task force meeting to the families of missing persons whose cases had been declared to be those of enforced disappearances.

It is pertinent to mention that the Sindh home department had sent a summary to the chief minister for giving one-time compensation to the families of the victims of enforced disappearance. The home secretary submitted in the summary that the missing persons had reportedly links with banned organisations like the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-London and others and their families had been narrating their stories of hardship since the disappearance of their loved ones.

He submitted that the Sindh government had previously allowed a compensation of Rs500,000 to each family of 25 missing persons in 2018 and the home department considered it appropriate to consider the compensation cases of the current petitioners on the same lines.

The home department proposed in the summary that funds amounting to Rs6,000,000 may be sanctioned for distribution among the families of missing persons at Rs500,000 per family and placed at the disposal of the home department for disbursement to the closest nominated kin of families through the Karachi commissioner after his full satisfaction regarding the completion of all legal formalities.

Published at The News on 17th August 2023

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