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Punjab withdraws police postings made ‘in violation of rules’

Updated November 01, 2018


"The violation of rules causes embarrassment for Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and Punjab IGP Amjad Javed Saleemi."— File
"The violation of rules causes embarrassment for Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and Punjab IGP Amjad Javed Saleemi."— File

LAHORE: The Punjab government on Wednesday withdrew the posting orders of some senior police officers two days after their appointments against key slots across the province after realising these were made in violation of rules.

Those whose postings were withdrawn included BS-20 police officer Zulfiqar Hameed who had been appointed Lahore capital city police officer (CCPO) vice BS-21 officer B A Nasir and BS-20 officer Sohail Habib Tajik posted as Bahawalpur regional police officer (RPO) vice Faisal Rana.

The postings of these officers against field assignments had reportedly been made in violation of rules and regulations and caused embarrassment for Chief Minister Usman Buzdar as well as Punjab police Inspector General Amjad Javed Saleemi, an official told Dawn.

He said Mr Hameed was attending the National Management Course (NMC) which was mandatory for promotion from BS-20 to BS-21 when he was posted as Lahore CCPO.

The Establishment Division, Islamabad, rules have categorically say that the officers nominated for the NMC must be relieved from their present postings.

“The subject course is mandatory for promotion, therefore, controlling ministries/divisions/departments will have to relieve the nominated officer”, reads the Establishment Division order.

Similarly, Mr Tajik’s posting as Bahawalpur RPO was also made in a hurry, as his name was included in the list of those Pakistanis who reportedly owned “undeclared foreign properties”.

Interestingly, both the officers had assumed their charge, held meetings at their new offices while their outgoing colleagues had also joined their next assignments.

In this backdrop, the government called a meeting, reviewed the matter and finally withheld the posting orders.

A notification issued by the Punjab Services & General Administration in this regard reads, “The department’s notification related to transfer/posting of Mr Zulfiqar Hameed as CCPO Lahore (in his own pay and scale) is hereby held in abeyance till the completion of his National Management Course on Dec 12, 2018 and Mr B A Nasir (BS-21) is allowed to continue as CCPO Lahore”.

According to another notification, the Punjab government transferred VVIP Security Special Branch DIG Imran Mahmood and posted him as Bahawalpur RPO.

The official said that Mr Mahmood enjoyed various key positions during the PPP government’s last tenure as he was said to be in good books of former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani. However, during the PML-N government, he was not considered for any filed assignment, spending most part of his service in Special Branch, Punjab.

Mr Tajik has been given new assignment as he was transferred and posted as VVIP Security DIG in Special Branch. A separate notification was also issued in this respect on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, in the second round, the Punjab IG made massively reshuffled BS-18 and BS-19 officers, transferring and posting 28 superintendents of police (SPs) across the province.

The appointment of BS-19 police officer Syed Ali Mohsin as Gujrat district police officer (DPO) against an existing vacancy also raised many eye-brows.

The official said that Mr Mohsin came under discussion during the last meeting of Chief Minister Buzdar with the IG, the chief secretary, home secretary and principal secretary to the CM wherein reshuffle of DPOs was finalised. During the meeting, the official said, Mr Mohsin’s name was proposed for Gujrat DPO slot for being close to the Chaudhrys of PML-Q.

However, Mr Saleemi had requested the chief minister to defer the case till later phase of transfers because of “some unavoidable issues” linked to the officer. According to the official, the CM agreed to the IG’s suggestion and his name was dropped for the slot. To utter surprise of many, he said, the officer was posted as Gujrat DPO late on Tuesday, raising some questions in this respect.

Other than these, Lahore Saddar Division SP Muaaz Zafar was transferred and posted as city division SP in the provincial capital. Rawalpindi Sadar SP Ali Raza has been transferred and posted vice Mr Muaaz. Imran Yaqooq, who was awaiting posting, has been transferred and posted as Gujranwala Investigation SSP, Central Police Office AIG (Inquiries) Waqas Hassan has been transferred and posted as Procurement AIG.

Similarly, Faisal Shahzad, who was awaiting posting, has been transferred and posted as Lahore Security SP vice Mohammad Naveed.

Lahore CRO SP Mustansar Feroze has been transferred and posted as Lahore Operations SSP vice Asad Sarfraz Khan, who has been posted as AIG (Admin/Security) at the CPO against an existing vacancy.

Published in Dawn, November 1st, 2018