IGP transfer: SC grills Swati, accepts Fawad Chaudhry’s explanation

IGP transfer: SC grills Swati, accepts Fawad Chaudhry’s explanation

Islamabad (Staff Report/Agency): The Supreme Court on Wednesday summoned federal ministers Fawad Chaudhry and Azam Swati and grilled them over their recent statements on the transfer of Islamabad Inspector General of Police (IGP) Jan Muhammad.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar heard a suo motu case on the transfer of Jan Muhammad.

The court summoned Fawad Chaudhry for his "irresponsible" and "double meaning remarks" about the recent transfer of Islamabad's inspector general of police (IGP).

Attorney General of Pakistan Khalid Javed, secretary establishment and interior secretary appeared before the court.

“Apparently, Fawad Ch commented on the judicial proceedings which is irresponsible,” remarked the chief justice. The top judge observed that without a doubt, the prime minister is the chief executive, however, clarified that such type of statements are generally avoided.

Chauhdry stated, “I highly respect the court. I do not have the guts to say anything about the court.”

Justice Nisar then asked, “Who issued the statement that if bureaucracy has to play the role then what was the point of elections?” The information minister said, “My statement was not directed at the court.”

Holding the Constitution book in the air, the top judge told Chaudhry, “Read the article immediately. In front of the court everyone is equal.”

The court then made Chaudhry’s clarification statement part of the court record.

Chaudhry then stated, “It is not appropriate that the IGPs do not answer phones of ministers nor return calls.” Justice Nisar asked, “So what if they are ministers? Are they above the law? What is the competition between a common man and a powerful minister? If you are insisting on your statement then we can look at it in terms of merit.”

However, the information minister said, “I am not insisting at all.” Justice Nisar then said, “We will separate your matter then.”

“You got the entire family, including women, arrested. Do those people have the same powers as you?” the CJP asked Minister of Science and Technology Azam Swati.

Swati then said, “I received a bomb threat and was warned that I will be blown up.”

Justice Nisar then asked the minister, “How much land do you own and have you illegally encroached on the land?”

The top judge ordered Swati to submit his and his children’s asset details and directed DG FIA to conduct an investigation.

Further, the court directed that a case be registered against Swati if the family lodges a complaint.

On Monday, the top court suspended notification of the transfer of Jan Muhammad.

Earlier the day, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar took suo moto notice of the IGP transfer, summoning the attorney general and secretary defence to clarify their position regarding the transfer.

“Secretary defence should appear before the court and explain as to why the top cop was transferred,” the top judge remarked. “Rule of law would be established in the country and the institutions would not be weakened,” the CJP clarified.

The attorney general informed the court that Prime Minister Imran Khan verbally ordered to transfer IGP Islamabad.

However, the court suspended the notification of Jan Muhammad’s transfer.

On Sunday, the IGP Islamabad Jan Muhammad was transfered allegedly for refusing to attend the call of federal minister for science and technology Azam Sawati.

However, the Interior ministry said Sawati had nothing to do with the transfer of IGP rather the summary of his removal was on PM’s table for a couple of weeks.