The meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior was held on Monday. Chaired by Senator A. Rehman Malik; the meeting was attended by Senator Javed Abbasi, Senator Mian Muhammad Ateeq Shaikh, Senator Muhammad Sardar Muhammad Shafiq Tareen, Senator Haji Momin Khan Afridi, Senator Kauda Babar and senior officers from Ministry of Interior (MOI), Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), Capital Development Authority (CDA) and the Mayor, MCI Islamabad.
The meeting commenced with condemnation of the Sahiwal tragedy and Fateha was offered for the departed souls of those who were killed in the tragedy. Chairman Committee Senator A. Rehman Malik was of the view that the police cannot be given license to kill and even if there was evidence against them, the Committee must be given the reason for them not be arrested instead. It is alarming situation that how lawlessly unarmed civilians were killed in day light by Punjab Police on main highway in front of dozens citizens around.
The Committee demanded that a report be submitted by the Ministry of Interior with details of all such encounters from the past ten years. He said all questions submitted to the Ministry must be responded to in great detail.
Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik directed that a judicial commission be formed and TORs be publicly announced and the Judicial Commission must be headed by a senior judge of High Court. He also stressed the need for clarity on the Daesh issue, whether or not this terrorist outfit was present in Pakistan. A report was sought by the Ministry of Interior on this matter to clarify whether Daish/ISIS exits in Pakistan or not?
Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik while pointing out questions to be addressed by the Commission asserted that the Committee would like to see if those killed in Sahiwal had any criminal record. He said the Commission must enquire about the evidence available with the CTD against the suspects and the reasons why killing of the children was attempted. He questioned whether this was an attempt to remove witnesses. Chairman Committee, Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior Senator A. Rehman Malik said that he has already taken notice of the encounter and has directed a thorough probe into the incident based on ground realities. He directed the Ministry of Interior to submit a comprehensive report with answers by the IG Police and home secretary Punjab.
He reads the questions which committee recommended to be sought from I.G. Police and Secretary Home Punjab which were endorsed by the members of the committee. He directed that the committee sought full details and profile of the deceased members of the family and details on whether any past criminal record, FIR or anything related to any criminal activity of the deceased individuals or their family existed or not.
The committee wanted probe as to what made the police to follow the family traveling in a small car and what was concrete evidence to consider the deceased as prime suspects, he added.
The committee asked when the alleged suspects stopped the car on CTD Police direction, then why police opened the firing. It also sought full police version on the incident — at what level such action was ordered — was there any FIR wherein these deceased were ever summoned or interrogated. Is there any intelligence report on them if that should be placed on record?
The committee also sought profile and the service history of all the officials of CTD involved in the shootout and whether any of them belonged to the local area or had anyone had personal animosity of the deceased/or other members of the victim family?
Another question raised by the committee was that if it was a police encounter, then was it being supervised by senior police officers as per the laws? Pemra was also asked to provide entire footage of the incident as it is broadcast on electronic TV channels.
Senator A. Rehman Malik said the tragic incident has happened on the main highway when the police firing could be seen by people around and eyewitness are available hence their statements must be made part of record.
Senator Javed Abbasi informed the Committee that he will soon introduce a bill in Senate that would deal with police reforms and citizen protection, which is the need of the day.
While deliberating over a report on illegal immigration and human trafficking of Pakistani citizens, Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik showed displeasure at the absence of DG Immigration. He directed that the DG’s presence would be mandatory in the next meeting. The Ambassador of Libya was also summoned in the next meeting to procure details of 11 illegal immigrants from Pakistan that died in a shipwreck on Libyan shores that killed a total of 90 migrants from different countries. Senator A. Rehman Malik said that it is matter of great concerns and worrisome that illegal immigration and human trafficking is increasing from Pakistan by each day adding that many Afghanis are traveling with Pakistani passport.
While discussing progress made to resolve administrative financial and legal issues of the MCI, Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik directed that all due funds must be transferred to MCI within two weeks. He also stressed the need for funds to be allocated separately to MCI and CDA in the new budget.
The Committee Chairman Senator A. Rehman Malik directed CDA to establish a slaughter house within two months that the residents can be provided with pure meat. He said that before buying the meat, one thinks whether it is of halal and healthy animal or not. He said there should be Islamabad Food Authority like food authorities exist in other provinces. Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik suggested that Senator Mian Muhammad Ateeq Shaikh coordinate the project. He also directed CDA and MCI to establish mini picnic points in Margalla Hills with easy approach and cheap rates as a layman can’t take family to Monal and other expensive picnic points. He directed the Islamabad Police to not disturb couples and the families unnecessarily while on picnic as the committee has received many complaints regarding it.
Committee also considered the report presented by the D.G FIA regarding a complaint against illegal operations of M/s Hadeed international Ltd at Karachi Airport. Chairman Committee Senator A. Rehman Malik said that Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) earlier had confirmed in its report that Hadeed International is not registered with Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) and was operating from Dubai. He asserted that the Civil Aviation not followed the legal process in allocating operational contract and should advertise it again for a new contract. The officials from Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) stated that company was registered with Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) and earlier report was incorrect due to spellings mistake. Chairman Committee Senator A. Rehman Malik said that this is very unprofessional attitude on behalf of Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) officials to term a highly important misreporting as spelling mistake adding that they otherwise tried to mislead the highest forum of the country i.e. Parliament. FIA was directed to investigate and submit a final comprehensive report to the committee.
The Committee strongly objected to the presence of outside staff, while Prime Minister of Pakistan met with a foreign Senator. Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik said that this was a disgrace to the country.