Shaharyar Niazi was a ‘fake’ UK diplomat

Salahuddin Haider

NOW that a two-member Scotland Yard team had arrived in Pakistan to brief Pakistani intelligence agencies about the murder in London of MQM leader Dr Imran Farooq, it is only fare that faces of those masquerading as UK diplomat in Pakistan, and declaring Altaf Hussain as a proven RAW agent, be lifted in the public interest.
A self-styled Pakistani Shaharyar Niazi has been portraying himself as the number two in the local UK High Commission as the deputy head of mission, and claiming knowledge about highly secret document of Scotland Yard against MQM and its leader, residing in London for years.
Queries made by this scribe, rattled since the claim was made during a TV interview, established beyond any shadow of doubt that, although Sheharyar, a local employees of the foreign mission, was upgraded some ten years ago by a former head of the UK high Commission here, Robert Gibson as his number two for administrative reasons.
He remained in that post for some time, when a new appointee was sent for the job from the British foreign and Commonwealth office to Karachi. Shaharyar, upgraded for sometime for localized jobs, had to be returned to his original assignment in Karachi. Records show that Sheharyar was never given diplomatic status, nor had diplomatic passpost.
He was upgraded only for administrative purpose, a mistake which was later corrected. His claim on a private TV channel, therefore, that he had seen or was told about the Scotland Yard proving Altaf Hussain and his two other colleagues, Mohammsad Anwar and Tariq Mir as recipient of Indian money of acting as agents of the Indian secret service RAW, was totally untrue.
He never had access to any kind of Scotland Yard secret files for the simple reason of being a non-diplomat. In fact he was twice interviewed by a private TV channel anchor person in which he claimed of having been a witness or having knowledge of Altaf Hussain and others being signatory to documents showing involvement with the Indians.
And when called again for elaboration and furnishing evidence as had been promised by him earlier, he dilly-dallied over the issue, saying that he will submit evidence of what he has been claiming when the time comes or at “proper fora”.
Highly knowledgeable sources here said as non-diplomat, neither assigned by the country of origin, nor his credentials being accepted as such with the Pakistani foreign ministry, he could not be authorised any kind access to secret or classified documents. Whatever he claimed in an interview, was a drama, which Sheharyar played with considerable proficiency, a tried to hoodwink the audience in Pakistan.
This is not to say that Altaf or his colleague could be exempted from the charges, but ScotlandYard, the British investigative police, alone can answer such sensitive questions. Reportedly, Scotlandyard or the London Metropolitcan police, rated among the most competent and efficient in the world, has submitted its report to the Crown Prosecutor for further examination.
If the latter felt satisfied with the contents of the investigation, done in five years, it will present the case to the British court for indictment.If it felt dissatisfied with its contents, it will refer back the case to the Scotland yard for furnishing of evidence that could make the case fool proof before the law court. Sheharyar Niazi, is the grandson of Lt-General Niazi, the military commander who surrendered before the Indian army in Dhaka on 16th December 1971, and later during the 1977 movement against Z A Bhutto came to join the JUP of late Shah Ahmad Noorani to blame Bhutto for everything.
General Niazi should have been tried for treason, but was let off after appearing before the Jusstice Hamood ur Rehman Commission which Bhutto as President and military administrator of broken Pakistan, had founded to probe into the Dhaka tragedy. His own autobiography is a pack of lies where he blames General Hameed, the then army chief for overlooking his demand for bolstering military needs of the army command in former East Pakistan.
The fact remains that he was a blotter, a fact which had been mentioned in black and white by the then ISPR chief Brigadier Siddiq Salik, who later perished in a plane with General Ziaul Haq in august 1988. Shaharyar Niazi’s is barely a tall, hollow claim, and nothing more than that.

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