Opp tables resolution demanding Senate panel to probe ‘Karachi incident’

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Staff Reporter

Islamabad

The Opposition parties tabled on Thursday a resolution in the Senate regarding the arrest of PML-N leader retired Captain Mohammad Safdar and the alleged abduction of the Sindh inspector general of police.
The resolution, which demanded that a Senate committee be formed to probe the incident, was tabled by Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, PML-N’s Raja Zafarul Haq.
Leader of the House Shehzad Waseem, along with other PTI senators, opposed the resolution, saying that two committees had already been constituted to investigate the matter and the upper house should wait for their findings.
A ministerial committee was formed by the Sindh government to investigate the mysterious “circumstances” that led to the early morning raid on the hotel room of PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz and arrest of her husband retired Capt Mohammad Safdar in Karachi.
Separately, Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa also ordered the Karachi Corps Commander to launch an investigation into the “Karachi incident”. Gen Bajwa’s directives came shortly after PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari called on the army chief and Director General Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt Gen Faiz Hameed to investigate the circumstances surrounding Safdar’s arrest.
During Thursday’s proceedings, PML-N leader Haq said that facts of the incident should be presented before the other two committees but that “does not mean that the Senate should remain quiet until the investigation findings come out”.
“There will be implications [of waiting for findings]. The implications will be political and legal […] In order to reach the right outcome, it is important it should be sent to the house committee and anyone who has anything to say about [the incident] can talk in front of it,” he said.
PPP leaders Sherry Rehman and Raza Rabbani also supported the resolution, warning that the matter could have serious implications if the parliament does not take action.
Senator Rehman welcomed the army chief’s order for an investigation but said that the “Senate should also be allowed to play its role”.
“This can lead to a grave crisis and it can turn into a constitutional crisis,” she cautioned. “Let Senate play its role.”
Rabbani, in his address, said that the incident had created a “precarious situation” and insisted that the Senate plays its role.
“The police force is an armed and uniformed force, and this force registered their protest by applying for leave. It was not just the IG, AIGs, DIGs, even the SHOs […] They knew that they were protesting against the state.
Nothing can be more serious than this that a uniformed force protests against the state or a step taken by the state. This needs to be handled properly,” he said and added: “If the Parliament doesn’t come in action, situation can worsen.”

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