K-P govt removes top cop, chief secretary

Reshuffle takes place after chief minister’s complaint to PM about hurdles, say sources


Umer Farooq February 09, 2019
File photo of Salahuddin Mehsud. PHOTO: EXPRESS

PESHAWAR: In a major reshuffle, the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government on Saturday removed the province’s top police official and chief secretary from their posts.

According to a notification issued by the Establishment Division, K-P Inspector General of Police (IGP) Salahuddin Mehsud has been transferred as the Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) IGP. AJK’s incumbent IGP Muhammad Naeem Khan will fill the slot vacated by Mehsud.

K-P Chief Secretary Naveed Kamran Balouch has been asked to report to the Establishment Division. He has been replaced by the Pakistan Administrative Services Grade-21 officer Muhammad Saleem.

Sources privy to the developments said the reshuffle in top government slots is an outcome of a detailed meeting held between Prime Minister Imran Khan and K-P Chief Minister Mahmood Khan in Islamabad on Friday.

They said the CM shared with the PM his concerns over hurdles being created by top bureaucracy. The sources stated that the chief minister told Khan that some bureaucrats were impeding the smooth running of K-P affairs.

“The CM shared his concerns with Imran Khan and said he wanted his men to be deputed on key posts so that he could easily run the K-P affairs” a source told The Express Tribune.

The sources said the PM assured the chief minister of his all-out support and categorically asked the CM to remove all those involved in impeding reforms in the province. No one creating hurdles for the provincial government will be spared, Khan reportedly told the CM.

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The PM later told Mahmood to suggest names of officials who could replace the IGP and chief secretary.

“Yes, PM Khan made it clear that he has zero-tolerance for all those impeding reforms in K-P,” a source privy to the meeting said.

However, the ruling party’s leader Shaukat Yousafzai contradicted the claim that a meeting was held between the premier and the chief minister. "All this is a routine process and no meeting was held between Prime Minister Imran Khan and K-P Chief Minister Mahmood Khan," Yousafzai told The Express Tribune.

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