LHC questions police security to VVIPs

LHC questions police security to VVIPs

LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Wednesday questioned Punjab government's policy of providing police security to VVIP personalities, remarking that apparently police themselves make threats reports against those they want to provide security. Head of a division bench, Justice Muhammad Qasim Khan made these remarks while hearing an appeal challenging over the six-year delay in completion of investigation into kidnapping and murder case of an actress after it was told that the IGP was not available as he had gone to Supreme Court to attend a case pertaining to provision of security to VVIPS."Even one man squad has been withdrawn from the number of unsafe individuals, including some former judges of superior courts, " the judge added. In 2012, Racecourse police had lodged a case against former chief minister Sardar Dost Muhammad Khosa on charges of kidnapping and killing his former wife actress Sapna Khan.

The police had also registered another FIR against the family members of the actress on the complaint of Mr Khosa, accusing them of fraud and kidnapping of his former wife Sapna Khan. Punjab IGP Arif Nawaz was summoned to present a report before the division bench explaining the delay in the investigation. Instead additional inspector general (Investigations) Abu Bakar Khuda Bakhsh appeared before the bench and informed it that the IGP was busy in the Supreme Court in Islamabad in connection with the hearing of a suo motu case regarding security enjoyed by ministers and government officers beyond entitlement.

At this, Justice Khan expressed his concerns over policy of providing security and bulletproof vehicles to important personalities or those requiring the facility owing to threats. The judge mentioned that his security squad was martyred in an attack but nobody came to him to ask whether he required more security or a bullet proof car. He regretted that many former judges facing threats had been deprived of their security squads comprising even single personnel.

Hearing the main case, the judge inquired the police officer to justify inordinate delay in completion of the investigation.AIG Bakhsh told the bench that a new investigation team had been constituted comprising four senior police officers. Petitioner's counsel Azhar Siddique objected to the team, asking the bench to appoint officers of not less than the rank of DIG to hold the investigation.Advocate Zubair Khalid appeared on behalf of Mr Khosa and questioned the maintainability of the appeal. However, the bench observed that it would issue contempt notices to the police officers for failing to conclude the investigation within the statutory time if the appeal was found not maintainable.

Justice Khan said, "A human life is at stake not of a kitten." The judge also observed that prima facie the investigation had been delayed to benefit one of the parties involved in the case. The bench directed the IGP to submit on next hearing details of cases pending for the last six months without complete investigation in the province.

About Sapna Khan case, the bench tasked DIG Investigations Chaudhry Sultan to supervise the investigation and file a report by May 21.

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