Govt, police dept at odds over new bill empowering home minister

KARACHI - The Sindh government is facing stiff resistance from police department over bringing a new law aimed at empowering the home minister Sindh in transfer and postings and other affairs of the police in the province.

The act which is named as Sindh Police Act 2018 is being prepared and would be tabled in the ongoing session of the provincial assembly.

According to provincial government sources, the new bill is aimed at empowering the provincial government role in appointing the Inspector General of Police in the province. The bill stated that the federal government will be bound to choose the new IGP Sindh from the three nominees given by the province. The induction of this rule is aimed at resolving the issue of removing IGP Sindh AD Khawaja as current rules are a hurdle to remove him.

In addition to it, the provincial government could also remove the IGP Sindh at anytime citing poor performance from him under the new rules. The rules of transfer and posting were also changes as the IGP Sindh would only have the power to recommend the posting even at lower level of police but the real power would lie with the home minster who would have the power to approve these recommendations or reject it.

It is pertinent to mention here that a case pertaining to transfer and posting of police is also pending in the Sindh High Court and the court had sought reply from the provincial government by May 8.

The Additional Advocate-General Shabbir Shah informed the SHC bench hearing a case on transfer postings that the Sindh government has started preparations for a new Sindh police act. “Police laws are being revised from the beginning and a draft of the act has been prepared, said Shah.

The draft law will soon be submitted to the provincial Cabinet for approval, he said adding that the police rules will also be reviewed in the new law. However, until the new act is approved, he said, no action should be taken and time should be given for a final reply.

Police sources said that a meeting was held on Wednesday chaired by home Minister Sohail Anwer Sial and Law Minister Zia Lanjhar who informed the police officials of the new law being brought in the province.

“The police officials rejected the new bill and said that they would oppose it openly and could also challenge it in court as it will lower the working capacity and morale of the police force due to extra-ordinary political interference through home minister, who is a political appointee,” they said.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt