AD Khawaja removal case: Cabinet endorses provincial govt's decision to replace IG

Meanwhile, bench extends its earlier stay order till today


Naeem Sahoutara May 25, 2017
Sindh High Court. PHOTO: EXPRESS

KARACHI: The provincial government informed on Wednesday the Sindh High Court (SHC) that the Cabinet had decided to replace Sindh IG Allah Dino Khawaja, according to the law and in light of the Supreme Court's judgment that the federal and provincial cabinets must take an administrative decision.

In his arguments in the case relating to the removal of Khawaja, Advocate-General Barrister Zamir Ghumro said the provincial government's decision to replace the top cop of the province was also put before the Cabinet, which had endorsed the decision.

Therefore, he cited that the apex court, in its judgment, had also ruled that the Parliament and provincial cabinets should take important administrative decisions. Since the provincial cabinet is empowered to take such a decision, in light of SC's judgment, no illegality or contempt of the court's order is committed, he maintained.

SHC stays IG’s removal for one more day

Regarding the procedures of the appointment of the IG, Ghumro said sometimes the federal and provincial governments differ on the appointment of an officer such as the IG. Sometimes, the Centre directly appoints the IG but the province does not object, he added.

He argued this reflected the beauty of democracy and how democratic governments take decisions with consultation.

The top government law officer reiterated his stance that since Khawaja was appointed on deputation in the province by the federal government, the provincial rules did not apply to him.

He further argued there were provisions regarding the service tenure of the government servants in the Sindh Civil Servants Act, 1973, but the law did not specify the length of the tenure. The length of the posting is decided on the basis of performance.

SHC seeks list of dept heads who completed tenures

Ghumro argued the provincial government did not enjoy the authority to take action against any officer working in the province on deputation - however, it could surrender their services back to the Centre.

Ghumro said Additional IG Abdul Majid Dasti was a senior officer and the provincial government had forwarded his name to the Centre for appointment on the IG's post.

However, he maintained, the government had constituted a commission to bring reforms to police laws, as had been demanded by the petitioners. For this purpose, the government had also set up a committee to review the existing laws and suggest changes, he added.

Concluding his argument, the AG said since the grievance expressed by the petitioners' stands addressed, their petition may be dismissed.
However, the bench extended its earlier stay order against the removal of Khawaja till today (May 25). It allowed him to continue working on the post till further orders.

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