April 28th, 2022
A collective of pro-human rights lawyers has filed a habeas corpus petition before the Lahore High Court (LHC) on behalf of Bebarg Imdad, a Baloch student who was picked up by law enforcement agencies on April 27 in the wake of the suicide attack on the Confucius Institute of Karachi University earlier this week.
The attack resulted in the tragic deaths of three Chinese nationals including the dean of the institute and has prompted harsh rhetoric from the Pakistani government.
During the hearing, which was scheduled for 12:30 pm today and lasted for only 10-15 minutes, Bebarg’s representatives urged the court to not only recover Bebarg but also to punish per the law her alleged abductors.
“The case has been set before Justice Shahid Khan. At first, no one from the government side appeared before the court but after a while, a government prosecutor was compelled by the court to participate. The court has ordered the CCPO Lahore, the SHO Garden Town police station, and the concerned CTD circle to submit a report regarding Bebarg’s alleged abduction immediately after Eid,” explains Advocate Ayaz Safdar Sindhu, one of the lawyers representing Bebarg.
“The next hearing is slotted for the 9th of May. That is when we will get more answers,” concludes Sindhu.
As the LHC heard about the matter members of the civil society and Baloch organizations held rallies at the Punjab University, the site of the alleged abduction, to demand due process for their fellow students. A peaceful rally of students was baton-charged by members of the University’s security force resulting in injuries to at least one student. The students have vowed to continue these processions until the release of their fellow.
Bebarg Imdad, a student of English literature currently enrolled at the National University of Modern Languages (NUML), Islamabad campus was visiting a friend at Punjab University (PU), Lahore when he was picked up by mainly plainclothesmen driving a white Toyota Vigo.
A video of Bebarg struggling against his captors as they violently push him inside the vehicle went viral on social media prompting an immediate backlash from progressive segments of the society demanding his release.
Members of the civil society and different students’ organizations held rallies at the Punjab University, the site of the alleged abduction, to demand due process for their fellow students.