LAHORE: With the recent ‘premature’ transfer of many senior police officials in the provincial capital and other parts of Punjab, the Lahore capital city police officer has been given a period of one month to improve his performance to retain his current position.

Inspector General of Punjab Police retired Capt Arif Nawaz in a meeting on Tuesday conveyed to CCPO BA Nasir that his performance would be observed for a month or so to take a final decision either he should be allowed to continue to serve on the position or not.

An official privy to the information seeking anonymity told Dawn that the IGP was not comfortable with the CCPO when some senior cops suggested the replacement of BA Nasir with another BS-21 officer.

Meanwhile, he said, amid some reports that Inspector General of Islamabad Police Aamir Zulfiqar has been tipped as the favourite candidate for the Lahore CCPO slot, removal of BA Nasir started doing the rounds.

Political factors behind transfer of 25 policemen

Many other senior cops also started efforts to clinch the key slot in Punjab, the official said.

The speculations ended when the Punjab IGP reportedly set a deadline of a month or so, he said.

On the other hand, the [recent] transfer and posting of nearly 25 police officers across the Punjab province, particularly the premature removal of senior cops of Lahore, again raised questions on reasons for the reshuffle.

The transfer and posting of too many officers in one go also led to a heated debate in police circles on the institutional criteria for reshuffle of seniors provided by Police Order 2002.

Especially, the removal of DIG Operations Lahore Waqas Nazeer some seven months after his posting and premature transfer of SSP Operations Mustansar Feroze and three divisional SPs besides warning to the CCPO Lahore remained the centre of the discussion among the police circles.

Earlier, the issued had come into limelight when five IGPs were transferred in Punjab during the period of last 10 months or so with an average two-month service of each of them as provincial police officer.

The official said one of the major factors behind the removal of Waqas Nazeer was said to be his differences with the elite of the Punjab government on the issue of appointment of station house officers (SHOs) in Lahore.

He said some senior political leaders from the government had requested for the posting of SHOs of choice in the provincial capital.

They played a major role in his transfer when Chief Minister Usman Buzdar was considering reshuffle in the province, he said.

About the transfer of Saddar Division SP Operations Syed Ali, the official said the division had been a hot belt for the police officers due to the presence of a number of ‘mafias’ operating there.

He said the issues pertaining to illegal occupation of land and political factors had also landed previous SP Saddar division Moaz Zafar into trouble when he acted against the ‘mafias.’

Same powerful groups again wielded their influence for the transfer of Syed Ali and the Lahore police top brass remained ‘largely silent despite knowing the facts.’

Published in Dawn, May 2nd, 2019