KARACHI: A former Karachi administrator has found himself in an awkward situation after a video went viral on social media, in which he is seen hurling invectives and obscenities at police officials for stopping his vehicle at a check post and asking for his identification. The former administrator, Fahim Zaman, however, claimed that the video was "edited" and showed only one side of the picture.
The incident occurred at the PIDC intersection within the limits of Civil Lines Police Station on Tuesday, when a police official, stationed at a check post, flagged Zaman's car and asked the occupants to show their Computerised National Identity Cards (CNIC).
The events that followed were captured in a video, seemingly by the police official who had flagged Zaman's vehicle. In the video, Zaman can be seen hurling abuses at the police officials and threatening them of dire consequences. "This is my city. Who are you to ask for my CNIC?" demanded Zaman. In response, the police official can be heard saying, "Sir, we are here for your safety."
The former administrator continued his tirade saying that the police officials were stationed only to prove their existence. "Let me call [Karachi police chief AIG] Ameer Shaikh," he warned, demanding the police to tell him what was the red zone and who owned it.
The police official then asked Zaman's driver to move the car to the roadside. At this, Zaman warned that he would call the Sindh Police chief and hurl obscenities at him.
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He signalled his driver not to remove the car from the middle of the road and demanded the police to call their senior officials.
A few seconds later, the car driver moved the vehicle to the side. The former administrator maintained that if the police was not able to recognise the former administrator, they knew no one in the city. "I have been the city's administrator twice but you don't recognize me. How would you recognise a common man?" said Zaman.
The video shot by the police officers went viral on social media after which Sindh IG Dr Kaleem Imam took notice of the maltreatment meted out to the cops and demanded a detailed report from the South SSP.
Speaking to The Express Tribune, Zaman clarified that the video doing the rounds on social media had been edited by the police officials and did not reveal the complete story. "I was on my way to work when my car was flagged at the PIDC traffic light and asked to stop," he started. "When I reached for my wallet, I realised that I had forgotten it at home."
On this, said Zaman, the police official said that he needed to show his CNIC because he was entering the red zone. "I told him that my office was four steps away and asked him what the red zone was and where did it say I needed to carry my CNIC to enter it," Zaman told The Express Tribune. The police, he said, responded by saying that the governor and chief minister's residences were in the area.
Then I asked the police officials if they were meant to provide security to only the CM House and Governor's and why they weren't also setting up such check posts in Korangi and Nazimabad.
While this was ongoing, said Zaman, one of the police officials stood in front of the car and aimed his weapon at him. "This is what angered me," Zaman explained. "Will they shoot a common man for not carrying his ID?" he questioned. He added that he was remorseful over his behaviour that was seen in the video but the source of his anger was the outrage that the police official aimed his gun at him simply for not being able to produce his CNIC.
Later that night, Civil Lines Police registered an FIR against Fahim Zaman and his driver on the charges of interference in the discharge of official duty. The FIR, number 31/2019, invokes sections 341, 353, 504 and 506/34 of the Pakistan Penal Code. The FIR was registered on the complaint of constable Adnan.
In his statement, constable Adnan said that he is posted at Civil Lines Police Station and was deployed at the PIDC intersection from 8 am to 4 pm, along with Saeed Salam, Mohammad Qasim, Shahid Ikhtiar Ahmed, Musawer Shah and constable Saeedullah.
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At 11 am on Tuesday, Adnan and the other police officials flagged a Honda Civic, bearing registration number AYY-174, which was coming from MT Khan Road. As the car stopped, Adnan said that he asked the driver to show his CNIC. However, the person seated in the passenger seat, whom he later discovered to be Faheem Zaman, told the driver not to show his CNIC and move forward. On this, Adnan said that he signalled constable Qasim, standing at the barrier, to stop the car.
As Qasim stopped the car, Zaman exited the car in a rage and started abusing and threatening, while interfering in the official work. What followed was captured in the video made by one of the officials.