SC turns down govt's plea to appoint new Islamabad IGP

Published November 1, 2018
The SC allows the govt to appoint an interim IGP, Islamabad due to the prevailing sensitive law and order situation. — File
The SC allows the govt to appoint an interim IGP, Islamabad due to the prevailing sensitive law and order situation. — File

The Supreme Court on Thursday refused a petition filed by the government seeking permission to appoint a new inspector general of police (IGP) in Islamabad.

Instead, the court suggested the government to appoint a top cop in the capital on an interim basis in light of the current sensitive law and order situation.

Read: Country remains tense on day 2 of protests against Asia Bibi's acquittal

IGP Islamabad Jan Mohammad was in Malaysia on ex-Pakistan leave to attend a course. He landed in Pakistan early Thursday. DIG Security Waqar Chohan had been looking after the office of the IGP Islamabad in his absence.

Earlier in the day, the government had approached the SC, requesting the court to hear the plea immediately due to the law and order situation of the country, in particular Islamabad. Subsequently, a three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar stated hearing the petition.

"Had we not suspended the decision of the IGP's appointment, what would you do in case the officer is on a visit abroad," the CJP asked, adding that the government would have to give the charge to someone else.

"Give additional charge to someone else," CJP Nisar said.

Talking about the ongoing protests following Asia Bibi's acquittal a day earlier, Chief Justice Nisar said that the government was responsible for maintaining the law and order situation.

"The situation around the country, including Islamabad, is sensitive and the IGP is out of the country, so owing to the situation, the court allows the government to appoint an IGP on interim basis," said the CJP, clarifying that Jan Mohammad would remain the permanent IGP.

Meanwhile, sources told DawnNewsTV that IGP Jan Mohammad has returned to home. He had visited his office but did not issue any orders as he found himself deep in the state of uncertainty, sources added. Subsequently, the IGP left his office to visit secretary interior who had summoned him.

Take a look: SC suspends notification for Islamabad IGP's transfer

On October 29, the CJP had suspended the 'unlawful' transfer of the Islamabad police chief after it emerged that he had been removed from the post following verbal directives from Prime Minister Imran Khan.

The CJP had taken suo motu notice in the wake of conflicting reports about the reasons behind ─ and timeline of ─ his transfer.

Local media had reported that the IGP had been transferred because he did not attend minister Azam Swati's phone calls. However, the government refused the media reports and said that the decision had been taken in the wake of rising crimes in the capital city.

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