ISLAMABAD: The interior ministry on Wednesday said the Sindh government would not withdraw policing power from the paramilitary Rangers force in Karachi.
“Earlier, we decided we will withdraw Rangers from the metropolis after Youm-e-Ali but after talks with Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah we have decided to extend their requisition,” Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar said while addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Wednesday evening.
He said the Sindh government will extend the policing powers of the paramilitary force by Wednesday night, which will then be approved by the federation.
Claiming that the federal government will not allow Rangers to be targetted, Nisar said, “Rangers is our own force and operating under rules and regulations.”
“The paramilitary force has become an object of political criticism which will not be allowed,” he added.
Further, lauding the Rangers, Nisar said, “It is a force trained to fight on the border and when they are deployed in the city is over and above their call of duty.”
On Tuesday, Sindh chief minister claimed that under the 18th constitutional amendment, the provincial government was bound to seek the legislative assembly’s approval before allowing Rangers to continue working under extended powers.
The statement comes in the wake of recent raids by Rangers at offices of different provincial government departments that have upset the political stakeholders. Four months ago, the paramilitary force was given special powers to detain suspects for 90 days. The permission expires on July 8.
Meanwhile, regarding the extension of powers to the Federal Investigation Agency, Nisar said the investigation agency only had authority in areas which did not fell in the provincial police’s jurisdiction.
“FIA has powers in areas including transnational and inter-provincial matters,” he said. “This is because of special needs and not intervention in powers.”
Speaking about the ongoing investigation of Imran Farooq’s murder case in Islamabad, Nisar clarified that the Scotland Yard team was still present in Islamabad and they had completed their interrogation with one of the accused.
Of the remaining two, British police will be given access to another accused in a day or two, said Nisar, adding that decision on the third will be taken after Eid.
Further, the interior minister informed the British authorities had so far not demanded extradition of suspects allegedly involved in MQM leader’s murder.