Illegal possession: Saying sorry is not enough, Supreme Court tells CCPO

Published: March 21, 2012

It was the city police chief’s turn to defend his department for its “faulty investigation” in an illegal possession case. PHOTO: INP

LAHORE: The Investigation Wing of the city police on Wednesday faced the wrath of the Supreme Court for the third consecutive day.

It was the city police chief’s turn to defend his department for its “faulty investigation” in an illegal possession case.

Capital City Police Officer Ahmed Raza Tahir appeared before a division bench – comprising Justice Jawwad S Khawaja and Justice Amir Hani Muslim – along with the investigation officer. The same bench had reprimanded, on Tuesday, Model Town division police for failing to recover a missing maid.

When proceedings resumed on Wednesday, Justice Muslim asked the investigating officer about the progress. The officer told the court that the suspect, who had surrendered to police on March 19, was on a three-day physical remand. However, he failed to satisfy the court when he was told to brief the court about preliminary findings of the interrogation. The investigation officer said that he would seek further remand of the suspect.

The court then inquired if the statement of the complainant had been recorded. The investigating officer’s reply was again in the negative. He said he had gone to her home twice “but she was not at home”. At this, Justice Khawaja pointed out that the complainant had been in court at all hearings. “Could you not [have] contacted her?” the judge asked, adding, “This is making a mockery of the law.”

Annoyed by the official’s replies, Justice Muslim remarked, “You do not deserve to be in uniform”. The judge then put the question to the CCPO, “Do you think this officer deserves to remain in the department?”

When Tahir tried to apologise, Justice Khawaja stopped him, saying that an apology would not serve any purpose. “The police have forgotten the Day of Judgment,” he said. Both judges then commented that the problem with the Police Department lay at the “supervisory” level.

“The matter is getting very serious and we do not know where it will end,” said Justice Khawaja. He then warned that the Supreme Court could take suo motu notice of the overall deteriorating law and order situation in the province.

The bench adjourned the case till Thursday (today) after issuing summons to the advocate general and the DIG (Investigation). The CCPO was also told to be present.

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