Protests announced against Khasadar, Levies legislation

Updated September 16, 2019

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Rejecting the passage of the Khasadar and Levies forces bills by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, the All Fata Khasadar and Levies Forces Rights Committee announced the launch of a protest movement to seek the merger of both forces in police in tribal districts. — AFP/File
Rejecting the passage of the Khasadar and Levies forces bills by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, the All Fata Khasadar and Levies Forces Rights Committee announced the launch of a protest movement to seek the merger of both forces in police in tribal districts. — AFP/File

KHAR: Rejecting the passage of the Khasadar and Levies forces bills by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, the All Fata Khasadar and Levies Forces Rights Committee announced the launch of a protest movement to seek the merger of both forces in police in tribal districts.

The announcement was made during a conference on ‘Rights of Khasadar and Levies forces’ here at the Levies Lines.

Senior officials of Khasadar and Levies forces from Bajaur and others tribal districts and leaders of the All Fata Khasadar and Levies Forces Right Committee, including chairman Said Jalal Wazir, attended the event to discuss ways to force the government to merge both forces in police in tribal districts.

Also, tribal elders, leaders of political and religious parties, local lawmakers including PTI MNAs Gul Dad Khan and Gul Zafar Khan and MPA Ajmal Khan, and district police officer Pir Shahab Ali Shah showed up.

The speakers criticised the provincial government over the passage of the Khasadar and Levies forces bills complaining the legislation was meant to bring 28,000 personnel of the two forces under the command of the provincial police instead of merging them with the police.

They said they rejected the bills as the assembly passed them without a proper debate; they’d nothing for the personnel’s welfare, and they violated the Fata Reforms Bill, 2018.

The speakers said the Fata Reforms Bill had declared that all personnel of Khasadar and Levies forces would become part of the police force following the Fata-KP merger but that hadn’t happened.

They declared the legislation a violation of the commitment of the provincial government, especially the chief minister’s, on the merger of Levies and Khasadar forces in the provincial police.

The speakers said the residents of all tribal districts would support the personnel of Levies and Khasadar forces in their struggle for rights.

They said peaceful yet forceful protest was the only way to make the government merge both forces in police.

The speakers regretted that though tribal districts were part of the province, the government was unwilling to merge the personnel of Levies and Khasadar forces in police.

They said they would take up the issue with the provincial government.

Mr Jalal Wazir said the protest movement would be extended to all tribal districts and would continue until their merger demand was met.

He said the personnel of Levies and Khasadar forces won’t work under the command of the police in tribal districts.

The committee chairman asked all non-local police officials to immediately leave tribal districts.

Published in Dawn, September 16th, 2019