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SHC seeks Govt reply on reducing IGP powers

Naimat Khan

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Friday issued notices to Sindh Government and other responded on cutting down powers of Inspector General of Police, Sindh.

The petitioner submitted that according to law the Sindh Government can’t transfer or post on important positions without prior consultation with IGP Sindh but large scale postings have been made on the directions of CM Sindh, Home Minister and others.

“No consultation has been done with IGP AD Khowaja, whose powers to post and transfer grade 18 officers have been snatched,” the petitioner held after which the court issued notices to the respondents.

Two days earlier, the Sindh Home Minister Sohail Anwar Khan Sial suspended seven Station Housing Officers (SHOs) for “their failure to bring down street crimes ratio” in a meeting where Inspector General of Police Sindh AD Khowaja wasn’t called in, it emerged on Wednesday.

Earlier, after assuming IGP’s powers of posting and transfer Sial appointed Abdul Qadir Thebo as Additional IG Karachi. Afterward he, while using the same powers, suspended seven SHOs without taking IGP into confidence.

Two weeks earlier after the Sindh Government took powers transfer and posting of the Inspector General Police and handed over these to home minister, the provincial government of Pakistan Peoples Party changed the team of Police Chief AD Khowaja in a major reshuffle.

Two contenders for the post of IGP from Pakistan Peoples Party’s list, Ghulam Qadir Thebo and Sardar Abdul Majeed got important positions of additional IG Karachi and Additional IG Sindh, respectively.

According to notification issued here on Monday; Mr. Ghulam Qadir Thebo chairman Enquiries and Anti-corruption is transferred and posted with immediate effect as additional Inspector General of Police, Karachi-Range vice Mr. Mushtaq Mehar, who has been transferred and posted as AIG Trarrafic police.

Khadim Hussain Bhatti, additional IG Traffic is transferred and posted as AIG research, development and inspection whereas Sardar Abdul Majeed has been Additional IG Sindh Range. Dr Aftab Ahmed Pathan, who was AIG Sindh Ranger, has been posted as AIG CID in place of Sanullah Abbasi.

Deeping the row over policing powers, the Sindh Government two weeks earlier issued notification giving the powers of appointing and transferring officers to Sindh Home Minister Sohail Anwar Siyal, a close aide of Anwar Majeed and Faryal Talpur. The powers had been taken back from the Inspector General of Police, Sindh earlier last week.

According to the new notification, which nullified the Sindh Government’s earlier notification issues last week, the decisions regarding posting and transfers of senior police officers will be taken by the Services, General Administration and Coordination Department of the provincial government after taking approval from Home Minister Sohail Anwar Siyal.

As per previous notification, the chief secretary was supposed to issue such orders of transfers and postings of the SSPs and SPs with approval of the Sindh chief minister but now such notification has been cancelled or withdrawn to empower the Sindh home minister. The latest notification has been issued with the approval of Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah. The order is issued in accordance with Rule-7(ii) of the Sindh Government Rules of Business, 1986.

According to the notification issued on Friday (July 7), not only SPs (grade 18) and SSPs (grade 19) but DIGs (grade 20) officers would also be transferred and posted with approval of the home minister Sindh. This decision came after days of taking away powers of transfers and postings of SPs and SSPs from inspector general of police Sindh, A.D. Khowaja.

Three weeks ago, Chief Secretary Sindh Rizwan Memon issued a notification which reads; “This department’s order of even number date 9-8-2016, whereby powers delegated to the inspector general of police Sindh with regard to transfer and posting of superintendents of police ( Bs-18)/Senior Superintendents of Police (BS-19) and equivalent, is hereby cancelled/withdrawn.”

A.D. Khowaja, who belongs to small village Tando Mohammad Khan district in southern Sindh, was appointed as IG Sindh by the PPP government. But later differences emerged between the provincial government of PPP and Sindh Police chief when the latter refused to accept the orders of Anwar Majeed, business partner of former President and mill owner from Badin.

The difference further deepened when the official refused to accept the party demand regarding recruitment in Sindh Police. In March 2016, he assumed charge as IG Sindh. His appointment was preceded by the removal of Ghulam Hyder Jamali who had found himself at the centre of a National Accountability Bureau investigation into mismanagement of police funds.

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