Karachi: The count of missing persons in Sindh, though criticized to be underreported, has been reported to rise from 116 to 161 according to a report submitted by Sindh police to Sindh’s Home Department.
According to the report, the number of enforced and involuntary disappearance has witnessed a significant rise in past months. the Home Department has constituted a special provincial police task force to investigate the cases of “missing persons” in Sindh.
Forty-five cases of reported missing persons have been tasked to Taskforce while special JITs have been formed to investigate 89 others.
The report cited recovery of 5 missing persons in recent months and finding the corpses of two others. The report also mentioned the handing over of 45 cases to Taskforce.
The meeting of Taskforce regarding the missing persons was held on October 15 in the provincial capital Karachi. The JITs constituted under the supervision of District SSPs also include personnel from Rangers and Intelligence agencies for better coordination to sort out the reasons and investigate the whereabouts of the missing.
The home department had submitted its report citing 116 reported cases of missing persons to Sindh High court, earlier.
The Sindh High Court had shown its dissatisfaction over the report for underreporting the cases of enforced and involuntary disappearance and the delay tactics presumably adopted by the home ministry and police department in this regard.
Sindhi nationalists and Human Rights defenders have also shown their dissatisfaction over the report and criticized it to be dubious under-representing the actual number of enforced disappearances.
“We regard this as Government’s effort to suppress the numbers of human rights abuse particularly enforced disappearances carried out by state forces to avoid international criticism” the spokesperson of a nationalist party commented.