The federal cabinet on Friday approved the appointment of Mushtaq Ahmed Mahar as the new Sindh inspector general, effectively replacing Dr Syed Kaleem Imam.
In an official notification issued by the Establishment Division, Mahar, "a grade 22 officer serving as the inspector general of the Pakistan Railways police, has been transferred and posted as the provincial police officer, government of Sindh, with immediate effect".
In a tweet, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan stated: "The decision has been made after consulting with the Sindh governor and in line with the provincial government's demands."
"We hope the new IGP will perform his duties keeping aside political affiliations and will ensure peace prevails in the province," the PM's aide added.
Mahar has also served as Karachi's police chief in the past.
Meanwhile, according to a separate notification issued by the Establishment Division, Imam has been transferred and posted as the National Highways and Motorways Police inspector general with immediate effect.
Earlier, the Sindh government in its January 16 letter to the Establishment Division had cited "compelling reasons" for Imam's repatriation.
According to the letter, a review of the crime situation in Sindh had shown an "increase in the incidence of crimes such as kidnapping for ransom, extortion, mobile snatching and vehicles snatching during Imam's tenure".
The letter had noted that the law and order situation in the province has "deteriorated during the past one year", and the IGP had "not only willfully defied the lawful directions of the provincial government but also violated the Sindh Government Rules of Business 1986" and other rules and regulations by "communicating directly with Foreign Missions, indulging in unnecessary media talks against the provincial government, placing services of provincial police personnel directly under the FIA — without the approval of competent authority."
The letter had stated that "till the time a new IGP is posted, the government of Sindh will assign look-after charge of the post of IGP to an additional IGP (BS-21) currently working in the province".
Other charges against the IGP had included, "not complying with the decisions of Sindh Public Safety Commission asking for specific reports and leaking official correspondence to the media apparently to embarrass the provincial government."
However, in response to the province’s letter, the federal government in its letter dated January 17 pointed out that "the look-after charge of the post of IGP Sindh cannot be assigned to any additional IGP of police working in the province being not covered under the inter-provincial agreement of 1993".
Subsequently, Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah had requested Prime Minister Imran Khan to replace Imam during a one-on-one meeting with the premier. On the occasion, the prime minister had given a "positive response" to the CM's request.