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Thursday May 18, 2017

SHC extends stay order on AD Khawaja case till May 23


KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Thursday stayed its order for AD Khawaja to continue performing his duties as Inspector General Police (IGP) Sindh.

The Attorney General (AG) Sindh Zameer Ghumro informed the court that authority to appoint the IGP Sindh rests entirely with the Sindh government.

“No individual can challenge the Police Act as per the constitution, which gives provinces the right to make amendments to the act,” the AG Sindh stated.

He added that if the centre is not satisfied with a law passed by the province, then the Supreme Court and not the High Court should hear the case. “Such matters should be forwarded to the Council of Common Interest,” he said.

Read more: Why does everyone hate AD Khawaja?

The court questioned the AG Sindh about the course of action to be taken if a certain person is affected by a law passed by the province.

The hearing was adjourned until May 23.

New application 

Following IG Sindh AD Khawaja's written statement submitted to the court on May 17 2017, another application was submitted before the court from Karamat Ali and others.

On behalf of the petitioner, Advocate Faisal Siddiqui stated that the Honorable Court may be please direct the IG Sindh AD Khawaja to file an affidavit under oath stating the detailed reasons for his desire to voluntarily step down from the post of IG as well as seeking the removal of his name from the list of respondents.

The petitioner further stated that the court may graciously further direct the IG Sindh to be present in person before the honourable court to assist in relation to the contents of his proposed affidavit.

He added that IG Sindh’s legal counsel, in a statement in front of the court and media, said that the Khawaja wanted to voluntarily step down from his position because he was not allowed to perform his duties due to a lot of interference from the provincial government, which is completely contrary to the content of the IGP’s written statement. 

The petitioner further stated that earlier on, the additional attorney general had stated before the court that the IGP Sindh was not allowed to function, which in fact was completely contrary to the content of the IGP’s written statement.

There is no mention of the problems encountered by the IGP Sindh in the paragraph-wise comments filed by Khawaja’s legal counsel.

On Wednesday, Khawaja expressed his wish in the SHC to voluntarily step down as the IGP Sindh in the best interest of the force.


Read more: Want to relinquish post in the best interest of the force: AD Khawaja

"AD Khawaja wishes to return to the federal government so that the provincial government can appoint an IGP of its choice," the lawyer said.

He requested the court to end the stay order and remove his client's name from the respondents' list.

"The court can neither remove Khawaja's name from the list of respondents nor end the stay order at this point," Justice Munib Akhter responded.

The SHC has stayed the order for Khawaja to continue performing his duties as the IGP Sindh numerous times in the past month after it asked respondents to the case to submit various documents.

A cabinet session, where Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah approved the decision to surrender the services of the IGP to the federal government, was held on April 5.

A total of 13 IGPs in Sindh were appointed between 2002 and 2017.

Khawaja was appointed the IGP on March 13, 2016.

On April 2, Sardar Abdul Majeed Dasti took charge as the acting IGP Sindh after the provincial government surrendered AD Khawaja's services to the federal government.

Earlier on April 11, the SHC extended the stay order for AD Khawaja to continue serving as the IGP Sindh until April 13.

Read more: IG Sindh AD Khawaja didn't fulfil expectations: Khursheed Shah

A notification issued by the Sindh government that replaced AD Khawaja with Sardar Abdul Majeed Dasti as the IGP was suspended by the SHC on April 3.  

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