KARACHI: Following the announcement of the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) about removal of some officers of Inter Services Intelligence and Pakistan Rangers, Sindh, from their current assignments for acting “overzealously” in the “Karachi incident”, the Pakistan Peoples Party government in Sindh has also claimed to have completed its own inquiry and is in the process of writing the final report, officials and sources said on Friday.
The Sindh government on Oct 22 established a ministerial committee to probe the arrest of retired Capt Mohammad Safdar, husband of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Nawaz, and alleged manhandling of the “highest level of police”.
The committee notified by the provincial home department was tasked to probe the incident pertaining to an FIR (561/2020) registered against Capt Safdar on Oct 18 at the Brigade police station.
No official interviewed
Interestingly, the Sindh government committee during the course of its inquiry spanning over almost a month, didn’t interview any individual, official or record statements of the people linked with the matter one way or the other.
It should be noted that Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah had said that he would appear before the committee if summoned.
The probe pertains to a case against PML-N leader Safdar regarding violating the sanctity of Quaid’s mazar
“The committee hasn’t interviewed any police official or any other individual,” said a source privy to the working of the committee. “It solely relied on the evidence and looked into the matter technically. It has reached the conclusion in the light of the evidence gathered through different sources. The committee is tasked to complete the job within a month and there are very strong chances that it would not need to extend the deadline.”
The committee headed by Labour and Education Minister Saeed Ghani also comprises Minister for Local Government Syed Nasir Hussain Shah, Minister for Culture Syed Sardar Ali Shah, Minister for Transport Awais Qadir Shah and Adviser to Chief Minister on Law Barrister Murtaza Wahab.
When contacted, Barrister Wahab appeared confident that the committee would emerge successful to meet the deadline.
“The notification of the committee was issued on October 22 with a clear direction to submit its report within a period of 30 days. We hope that the deadline will be met,” he told Dawn in his brief response.
PTI awaiting probe report
The Sindh government’s report is keenly awaited after PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari had hailed the decision of the Pakistan Army on the issue. The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf is among those political forces desperately looking forward to the outcome of the provincial government’s findings.
“The armed forces have done their job ... in this matter,” said the PTI’s Karachi president MPA Khurram Sher Zaman. “We have our reservations on their [PPP government] intentions and performance but still we want them to come up with a final report. We expect them to also tell the people what really had happened at Mazar-i-Quaid. The people want a true picture and would not allow anyone to come up with half truth for anyone’s political interests.”
Published in Dawn, November 14th, 2020