ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court has allowed nuclear physicist Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan to appear before him tomorrow (Wednesday) to hear his petition calling for the enforcement of basic rights, including the right to freedom of movement throughout the country.
The bench of two judges at the top court led by Judge Mushir Alam took a petition submitted by Dr. Khan through his advisors.
Dr Khan had appealed in the high court against the decision of the Lahore High Court (LHC) last year which rejected similar applications on the grounds that the court did not have jurisdiction in view of special security measures taken by the state for its protection.
The high court has also rejected the defense ministry’s request to listen to the case on camera.
During today’s hearing, the judge wondered how the petitioner first approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC), and then went to the LHC on the same topic.
Judge Yahya Afridi asked the applicant’s advice that it would be better to approach the IHC again.
The defense is praying to the judge that the applicant is a national hero, because this is a matter of human rights, the top court can then exercise its power under Article 189 of the constitution.
“The applicant himself wants to appear before the court,” said the lawyer. Based on this argument, the court allowed Dr Khan to postpone the hearing until tomorrow.
Top scientists have stated in his petition that he was a pioneer of Pakistan’s nuclear program and it was because of the tireless efforts of the people at the top of affairs that he had succeeded in making the country a nuclear power.
The applicant said that he felt proud that he had done his part to secure Pakistan from the “evil eye of Pakistan” [its] neighbors and other enemies “.
The physicist further said that since he came to Pakistan [in the 1970s] and starting to work on nuclear projects, he has enjoyed personal security that is in accordance with his status. But now the situation is such that security service personnel have placed themselves in a house next door to make sure no one has access to it, he said.
Dr Khan was not permitted to move, attend social or academic functions in the country without the prior approval of the security authorities, the petition said, adding that “this situation makes the petitioners kept in virtual confinement”.
“This security authority’s action is illegal because no such order has been given to me to guarantee the care given to me now,” said Dr Khan.
Dr Khan said that this difficulty began in January 2004 when he was put under house arrest under the pretext of security.
He said he did not have access to any friends, so his daughter and children who lived several homes away could not see him, adding that the boundaries were so bad that he could not even access the court.
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