Mandi Bahauddin DPO transferred on ‘PML-Q demand’

Published May 1, 2021
Mandi Bahauddin District Police Officer Ali Raza has been transferred reportedly on ‘political ground’ and posted as assistant inspector general (discipline) at Central Police Office. — Photo courtesy Mandi Bahauddin Facebook
Mandi Bahauddin District Police Officer Ali Raza has been transferred reportedly on ‘political ground’ and posted as assistant inspector general (discipline) at Central Police Office. — Photo courtesy Mandi Bahauddin Facebook

LAHORE: Mandi Bahauddin District Police Officer Ali Raza has been transferred reportedly on ‘political ground’ and posted as assistant inspector general (discipline) at Central Police Office vice Syed Imran Karamat Bukhari who has been transferred and posted as Punjab Elite Force Headquarters SP against a vacancy.

An official, privy to the information, told Dawn that Raza was transferred on the pressure exerted by the PML-Q, an ally of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) in Punjab and Centre. He claimed there was an understanding between the two parties that the Punjab government would give preference to the ‘wish’ of PML-Q in posting of officers in police and district administration in its stronghold districts, particularly Gujrat and Mandi Bahauddin.

The officer said Ali Raza was under immense pressure to take action against the workers of the other parties since assuming the charge as Mandi Bahauddin DPO in September of the last year and he had resisted such demands.

Former CCPO Umar Sheikh sent back to federal govt

He said the local PTI leadership also took up the matter with Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, complaining that the PML-Q was exerting pressure on the former DPO to harass its (PTI’s) workers to retain monopoly in the district.

Despite this, the Punjab government was under pressure to transfer Ali Raza for not carrying out its directions in letter and spirit.

The matter reached the office of the inspector general of police who offered resistance to secure posting of Ali Raza. However, the PTI government succumbed to the PML-Q’s pressure and transferred Ali Raza from the district.

The government has given acting charge of the DPO to the Mandi Bahauddin SP (investigations) Anwar Saeed Kingra.

The police circle believe that the appointment of DPOs in Gujrat and Mandi Bahauddin has been a challenging task due to the influence of the PML-Q.

In a related development, the Punjab government expelled former Lahore Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Umar Sheikh from the province a few days after he warned of forming a political party in the city in case of forcible retirement.

Once the most favourite police officer of Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, Mr Sheikh had got embroiled in dozens of controversies during his short tenure as the Lahore police chief.

Before and during appointment as the CCPO, the PM had termed Umar Sheikh one of the most daring police officers, saying he would eliminate land grabbers from the provincial capital. However, the Punjab government had suddenly removed him from the post in January this year, following controversies and posted him as deputy commandant Punjab Constabulary.

Reports emerged the federal government has prepared a list of incompetent police officers to send them on forced retirement under a new policy.

When Mr Sheikh was told that his name was also in the list, he announced a plan to launch a political party for social and institutional reforms. He made the announcement on social media that if he was forced to retire, he would form a political party like Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal at the Lahore level only.

It is said that his announcement irked the ruling elite, which reacted promptly and placed his services at the disposal of the federal government.

Besides, the Punjab IGP also issued transfer and posting of three superintendents of police (SPs) here on Friday.

Published in Dawn, May 1st, 2021

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