PESHAWAR: The federal government on Wednesday transferred Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police chief Dr Mohammad Naeem Khan and replaced him with Sanaullah Abbasi.

Dr Naeem was appointed the KP police chief in February last year.

Rumours of Dr Naeem’s transfer were doing the rounds since the Saturday’s visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to the provincial capital, wherein he met the cabinet members, the chief secretary and the police chief.

An establishment division notification said Sanaullah Abbasi, a BS-21 officer of Police Service of Pakistan and currently serving as the Gilgit-Baltistan police chief, under the Kashmir affairs and GB division, had been transferred and posted Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police chief, in his own pay and scale.

Sources said Dr Naeem’s removal was decided during the visit of the prime minister to the provincial capital.

They said the provincial government was not happy with the slow pace of extension of police jurisdiction to the merged districts.

They said there were apprehensions that Dr Naeem was not an assertive type of police chief, which led to his departure in less than a year.

Dr Naeem is the third KP police chief to have been transferred under the Mahmood Khan administration.

Earlier, in September last year, the federal government had transferred Mohammad Tahir and appointed Salahuddin Khan Meshud as the police chief.

However, Mr Mehsud’s second stint as KP police chief lasted for only a couple of months as simmering dispute between the police department and bureaucracy over extension of the provincial police to the merged districts cost the then chief secretary and the IG their jobs.

Dr Naeem was appointed KP police chief on Feb 8, 2019 following the removal of Mr Mehsud.

The outgoing police chief oversaw the thorny issues of extension of the police jurisdiction to the merged districts and absorption of Khasadar and Levies personnel in the police department.

Published in Dawn, January 2nd, 2020

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