SIALKOT: A group of twenty-three Sikh Yatrees, led by Navneet Kaur from USA, visited Gurdwara Babey Di Beri here today.
During their two-day visit to the city. Sikh Yatrees performed their rituals. Struck by nostalgia they recalled their pre-partition memories. Yatrees exchanged gifts with local people and distributed edibles. Later, Yatrees also visited the Gurudawara Kartarpur-Shakargarh and performed various rituals.
PM orders an inquiry in Sahiwal killings
ISLAMABAD: PM Imran Khan has sought a report from CM Punjab apropos Sahiwal shooting in which CTD police killed four including a teenager and her parents.
PM took to Twitter to appreciate the great job done by the CTD in the fight against terrorism. He held that everyone must be accountable before the law: “As soon as JIT report comes, swift action will be taken. The govt’s priority is protection of all its citizens.”
Imran Khan further tweeted: “Still shocked at seeing the traumatized children who saw their parents shot before their eyes. Any parent would be shocked as they would think o their own children in such a traumatic situation. These children will now be fully looked after by the state as its responsibility.”
JIT formed by IGP would be headed by a DIG and harbor members from intelligence services. Meanwhile, CTD personnel who were involved in the dubious shooting have also been put behind bars on the orders of CM Punjab who held: “… CTD officials will be punished if found responsible for the cold-blooded killings.” Later FIRs were registered against all 12 cops arrested u/s 302 penal code of Pakistan.
Those injured in the firing incident – termed as an ‘encounter’ by the CTD – are being treated in medical facilities. Sadly one wounded is a minor who happens to be the son of the killed husband and wife.
Relevant I: With the alleged shady encounter on a highway in Sahiwal district on Saturday noon resulting into killing of four persons, including two women, a big question mark was posed on the functioning of Punjab Police. The victims were first declared as kidnappers and then as terrorists from a proscribed group by the police force, which raised eyebrows on the alleged shootout, followed by contradictory witnesses’ narratives. As the incident drew wide ire and condemnation, demands were also made for a thorough probe. Prime Minister Imran Khan himself contacted Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar and sought a report over the alleged encounter. He directed for a comprehensive and transparent investigation into the incident so that facts could be ascertained. Separately, Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain, in a video message, said if the version of Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) about the incident was not correct, then the personnel involved in it would be brought to book and face exemplary punishment. The Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD), in a statement, said its personnel signaled a car and a motorcycle to stop near toll plaza on GT Road, but the occupants opened fire on them and in the ensuing shootout, four persons, including two women, were killed by the firing of their own accomplices. The victims were identified as Muhammad Khalil, his wife Nabeela, 13-year-old daughter Areeba and a neighbor. Three children were also recovered from the car, who, later, clearly contradicted the CTD version and said the police fired upon their parents, elder sister and the car driver when they were traveling from Lahore to Burewala. The surviving boy Umair, who received a gunshot wound in his leg, later identified the deceased as his parents, teenage sister and his father’s friend. The media narrated accounts of the children in which they maintained that their parents were killed in a cold blood by the police. On the other hand, after the shooting incident, residents of Ismail Nagar in Lahore, neighbors and people of the area blocked Ferozpur Road demanding speedy action against the relevant police personnel. They rejected the police statement, saying they had been familiar with the family for the last many years. Meanwhile, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Punjab Amjad Javed Salimi has formed a four-member Joint Investigation Team (JIT), headed by DIG Zulfiqar Hameed, to investigate the alleged encounter and present its report within three days. According to eyewitnesses, the CTD officials opened fire on the car without hurling a warning and refuted the claims about the recovery of weapons or explosives from the car. Iftikhar Durrani said that the prime minister had taken notice of the incident and was in touch with the chief minister. He said the prime minister was saddened and worried over the tragic incident and directed for the urgent probe by the JIT to fix responsibility. The incident once again exposed the fragility of Punjab police force’s modus operandi, especially those personnel deployed on checkpoints as in the past, several incidents of firing had resulted in causalities.
Relevant II: Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar on Saturday took notice of the killing of four people in the alleged police action in Sahiwal. According to a handout issued here, the CM sought a report from the Inspector General of Police (IGP) and directed that the incident may be investigated from all aspects. It is pertinent to mention here that IGP Amjad Javed Saleemi has formed Joint Investigation Team (JIT) over the incident. According to the details, DIG Zulfiqar Hameed would be the head of JIT while members of intelligence agencies would be members of the team. The JIT would present a report in three days after completing its investigation.
Relevant III: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Ejaz Ahmed Chaudhry Saturday expressed deep sorrow over the tragic incident of Sahiwal in which four persons were killed by the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) personnel. Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar had ordered immediate action and all the accused were arrested in a half an hour, who would be given exemplary punishment after investigations, he said talking to a private news channel Ejaz Chaudhry said the PTI government was fully determined to introduce police reforms in the country. He said the PTI had never done politics on such type of tragic incidents and the responsibles would face the strict punishment. The persons killed in the incident belonged to his constituency, who were all innocent, he added.
Relevant IV: Dr. Shahbaz Gill, spokesperson of Punjab Chief Minister, Saturday said the Counter Terrorism Department officials involved in the alleged extra-judicial killing of a family, had been taken into custody on the orders of Chief Minister Usman Buzdar. Talking to a private news channel, he said the chief minister, who spent a busy day in Mianwali, was on his way to Sahiwal. He said the CTD officials had claimed that four persons, including two women, who were said to be affiliated with Daish, were killed in the shootout near Sahiwal. However, moments after the alleged encounter, the family and eyewitnesses disputed the claim. Strict action would be taken against the officials if they were found guilty in the matter, he added.
Crime fighter officers appointed: IGP
LAHORE: After completion of appointment of best crime fighter officers across the province, criminals will be chased now and force will work by day and night for the provision of full relief to the public.
This was stated by Inspector General Police (IGP) Punjab Amjad Javed Saleemi while addressing All RPOs DPOs through video link conference here at Central Police Office today.
In order to protect the province, a comprehensive operational strategy has been chalked out for these crime fighter officers by which every criminal will be given an exemplary punishment besides, ensuring the protection of lives and property of people, he said.
In the conference, a strategy of strict action was decided against proclaimed offenders, court absconders, car and motorcycle lifters and drug peddlers. In order to stop the transportation of theft car and motorcycles to other provinces, police pickets at borders will be made functional and strict action will be taken against those who cross the borders. It has been decided to keep permanent coordination of all field officers in this regard so that vehicles lifting may be obstructed.
CCPO Lahore BA Nasir told the IGP that police stations of Lahore had been divided into three categories according to crime graph in which 35 police stations fall in ‘A’ category, 25 in ‘B’ and 24 in ‘C’ category. He further told that 150 special operation teams had been constituted besides, re-deployment of PRU and Dolphin Squads.
On the basis of Rescue 15 calls crime mapping and tracking of hardened criminals, effective checking of motorcycles, deployment of anti-vehicle lifting squad on pickets, there has been a decline of 27 percent reporting of theft and 20 percent decline in motorcycles lifting.
In the conference, a comprehensive and strict pre-emptive strategy has also been finalized in order to stop theft, dacoity with murder, child abuse and other street crimes. All field officers will be responsible to implement this strategy in its true letter and spirit in their respective districts with the view to maintain the police public friendship.
Additional IG CTD Rai Muhammad Tahir said that to stop the activities of an extremist on social media 5964 sites have been detected and among them, 4385 have been blocked so far. He further told that the persons who were involved in financial assistance of terrorists 35 cases have been registered and 56 were arrested whereas 24 have been convicted. He further added that the sectarianism has been totally under control and no incident in this regard has been reported from 2018 till date.
In the conference, the establishment of Alternate Dispute Resolution Committee for resolution of public issues has been discussed in detail and all field officers briefed IG Punjab that they have finalized the names of nominated persons of the committees.
On which IG Punjab directed Additional IG special branch, Zaeem Iqbal, that the process of verification of nominated persons of these committees should be completed within one week.
Prosperous Balochistan for strong Pakistan
LAHORE: Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar Wednesday said that Pakistan’s future was linked with progress in Balochistan and “We must work for its prosperity and solidarity.”
Addressing a 95-member delegation of the 48th Staff Course of the Pakistan Navy War College at the Governor’s House here, he said, “Balochistan must be empowered if we want to see Pakistan strong and the government is taking tangible steps in this regard.”
The Navy War College officers’ delegation was led by Rear Admiral Naveed Ahmed Rizvi (Hilal-e-Imtiaz) while the officers from Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Libya, Malaysia, Oman, Myanmar, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and UAE were also part of the delegation.
The Punjab Governor said Pakistan had invited India with an open heart for dialogue but India’s response was non-serious, adding that Pakistan had won the hearts of the Sikhs across the globe by opening Kartarpur Corridor but India didn’t look that willing on the project.
He said good governance could not be ensured without eradication of corruption, ensuring transparency and upholding merit in the country, adding that Prime Minister Imran Khan had very clearly pointed out that the corrupt would not be forgiven at any cost and no compromise would be made on accountability. “Islamic Ummah will have to be united if Kashmir and Palestine issues are to be resolved as per the wishes of the Muslims,” he added.
Chaudhry Sarwar said the government was working hard to evolve a uniform education policy in the country, adding that the foreign donors were willing to fund for the development of education sector in the country.
The Governor said the Punjab government was pursuing a policy of making police and other institutions apolitical on the pattern of KPK.
Responding to the questions from the officers, Punjab Governor Sarwar said the PTI government had promised to work for the Southern Punjab province, adding that Southern Punjab Secretariat would very soon be operational and it would be instrumental in solving the problems of the people of South Punjab.
To another question Ch Sarwar said Pakistan had always worked for durable peace and brotherhood in the region, adding that Pakistan had rendered innumerable sacrifices in the war against terror. He said, “The sacrifices made by our armed forces and the civilians to grapple with terrorism are unprecedented in the history of the world.”