SHC confirms pre-arrest bail of Kamal, others in land allotment reference

Updated 25 Dec 2019

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In July, the SHC had granted interim pre-arrest bail to Mustafa Kamal against a surety bond of Rs500,000 while the other suspects also obtained interim bail. — Reuters/File
In July, the SHC had granted interim pre-arrest bail to Mustafa Kamal against a surety bond of Rs500,000 while the other suspects also obtained interim bail. — Reuters/File

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court on Tuesday confirmed the interim pre-arrest bail of former Karachi nazim and Pak Sarzameen Party chairman Syed Mustafa Kamal and others in a reference about alleged illegal allotment of land.

The two-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ahmed Ali M. Shaikh confirmed the interim bail of Mr Kamal, then executive district officer Iftikhar Kaim­khani and eight others after hearing arguments from both sides.

In July, the SHC had granted interim pre-arrest bail to Mustafa Kamal against a surety bond of Rs500,000 while the other suspects also obtained interim bail.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had filed a reference against the former mayor and others in June regarding alleged illegal allotment of around 5,500 square yards of commercial land to Bahria Town for a multistorey building in Clifton.

Order reserved in police officers’ transfer case

Besides the former nazim and EDO, NAB had also named then district coordination officer Fazlur Rehman, then executive district officer Iftikhar Kaimkhani, then district officer Mumtaz Haider, then additional DO Syed Nishat Ali, then sub-registrar-II, Clifton, Nazir Zardari, Zain Malik, the son-in-law of real estate tycoon Malik Riaz, builders Mohammad Dawood, Mohammad Yaqoob, Mohammad Irfan and Mohammad Rafiq, all associated with DJ Builders and Developers, as accused in the reference. The reference is pending trial before an accountability court in Karachi.

Order reserved

Another division bench of the SHC on Tuesday reserved its order on a petition challenging the notifications of provincial authorities to surrender the services of two senior police officers to the federal government.

The petition was filed by some members of civil society against the notifications issued on Oct 15 and Dec 6, surrendering the services of DIG Khadim Rind and SSP Dr Rizwan Ahmed Khan to the establishment division, respectively, and contended that the Sindh government was allegedly interfering in the transfer and posting of police officers.

After hearing Advocate General of Sindh Salman Talibuddin and counsel for the petitioners Faisal Siddiqui, the two-judge bench headed by Justice Mohammad Ali Mazhar reserved the order.

The advocate general argued that the petition was not maintainable since both police officers had not been made petitioners or respondents in the petition and the petitioners were also not the aggrieved party.

He further argued that the provincial police officer was aware of these transfers and added that how some secret and confidential documents of the police department had reached the petitioners.

The petitioners’ lawyer argued that the provincial government was undermining the authority of the inspector general of police by interfering in the transfer and posting of police officers.

He further said that in a judgement the SHC had held that the IG must have independent control as far as the postings and transfers were concerned and the ruling was also upheld by the Supreme Court.

The lawyer also referred to a recent letter of the IG sent to the chief secretary in which the provincial police officer expressed concerns over the sudden and unplanned surrender of these officers and said it had not only affected the police’s working but also created an environment of uncertainly in officers.

Published in Dawn, December 25th, 2019