General

SC begins hearing Pakpattan DPO’s transfer case

The Supreme Court began hearing a suo motu case pertaining to the transfer of Pakpattan District Police Officer (DPO) Rizwan Gondal on Monday.
A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar took a suo motu notice of the DPO’s transfer following an alleged altercation with Khawar Maneka — the former husband of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s wife.
The apex court had earlier questioned the ‘timing’ of the Pakpattan DPO’s transfer and summoned Maneka along with his son Ibrahim Maneka, Ahsan Jameel Gujjar, DIG Shehzada Sultan, and Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar’s personal secretary as well as his chief security officer.
Maneka and his daughter Mubashira have reached the apex court premises. Speaking to the media, Maneka said he and his daughter will record a statement in the court but refused to make further comments.
As the hearing went under way, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Punjab Kaleem Imam informed the court that he did not have the file.
The chief justice then asked why action was not taken against Ahsan Gujjar. “Are you the guardian of the children?” Justice Nisar inquired Gujjar, to which the latter responded that he was the unofficial guardian. He apprised the court that Maneka’s children were under pressure and a mutual friend had called him from Africa.
The chief justice then asked how Gujjar knew the Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar. “I am a [common] citizen,” Gujjar responded. Justice Nisar then said, “Do not lie in the court. How are you related to the [Maneka] children. Are you their paternal or maternal uncle?”
Justice Nisar further remarked that people could not summon the police to their homes and insult them. Former Pakpattan DPO Gondal, who was also present at the hearing said Gujjar had questioned him over not executing the message he was sent. “Gujjar told me that during the British rule, the [Maneka] family’s properties were looked after by the deputy commissioner,” Gondal said.
After Gondal’s statement, Regional Police Officer (RPO) Sahiwal appeared before the court and seconded the former’s statement. The top judge then remarked why the Punjab CM had heeded a third party’s advice in the matter.
The case
Reports of Gondal’s transfer sparked a controversy earlier this week, as speculation suggested that the police officer was transferred because of the August 23 altercation between the police and Maneka.
According to reports, police personnel under Gondal’s watch tried to stop Maneka at a checkpoint for speeding but he did not stop. The police then chased his vehicle and managed to intercept him.
The Punjab IGP Imam, soon after the reports, denied that Gondal was transferred under any pressure and said it was done due to his giving misleading statements about misbehaviour by police personnel with a citizen.