Transfer of cases to Pakistan military courts decline

Islamabad: The transfer of cases to Pakistan military courts have appeared to decline as for the past couple of months not a single case has been transferred, a media report said on Tuesday. According to sources, the cases are with the interior ministry, but these have not been sent to the army authorities apparently because of missing documents, Dawn online reported. The slowing down is also being linked to appeals pending before the Supreme Court. Executions in at least eight high-profile cases have been stopped because of the appeals in the apex court. The last batch of cases was transferred in December 2015, which included an attack on a bus in Karachi’s Safoora Goth on May 13, 2015, in which 45 Ismailis were killed, and the murder of rights activist Sabeen Mehmood. After last December, sources in the interior ministry claimed the provinces and the Islamabad administration forwarded only those cases which were already under trial in anti-terrorism courts or where the offences were not covered by the Pakistan Army Act. According to an official, trial in these cases is under way at a normal pace and the accused in most of the cases were "facilitators" and, therefore, the interior ministry did not recommend their transfer.  The problem emerged when the interior ministry, in September last year, asked the defence ministry for the age of the detainees at internment centres whose cases had to be transferred to military courts.