- Inquiry officer recommends criminal action against Khawar Maneka in case he used abusive language against police
LAHORE: The inquiry team formed to investigate the matter of sudden transfer of Rizwan Gondal from the post of district police officer (DPO) of Pakpattan pointed out in its report that it could not find any evidence of targeting of Maneka family by the police, a private TV channel reported.
The report prepared by Additional Inspector General Investigation Abu Bakar Khuda Bakhsh mentioned that no evidence was brought forth or found on record, to substantiate the allegation of malafide on part of the police or targeting family of Khawar Farid Maneka deliberately.
The inquiry report states the issue between Khawar Maneka and Gondal originated from two incidents that took place on different dates, one on August 5 and the other on August 23. The first incident took place at 2:15am on August 5, when the Punjab Highway Patrol (PHP) personnel misbehaved with a young man and a woman, who were en-route to Baba Fareed Ganj Shakar shrine on foot.
Khawar Maneka verbally complained to the DPO in this regard, but did not file a written complaint despite being directed. On Aug 23, the second incident occurred at 12:45am, when police tried to stop Khawar Maneka, but he sped his vehicle. Maneka refused to let personnel search his vehicle after it was chased and intercepted by the Elite Force vehicles, according to the report.
Maneka called the DPO and the police officer directed the police team on the spot to let him (Maneka) go. Allegedly, “he (Maneka) used extremely abusive language against the police officials, after he had talked to DPO and communicated his grievance to him and DPO had given directions to the Elite Team to let him go,” the report mentioned.
It said that although, Khawar Maneka denied having used abusive language, but he did not appear before the inquiry committee in order to avoid cross-questioning in this regard. “The version of Khawar Maneka regarding misbehavior of police on the night of August 23 by the Elite Police officials and the counter version of the police officials about jumping the picket point and subsequent extreme abusive language by him remains inconclusive,” it said.
“This being so as the complainant party did not want to be part of the process of cross-questioning during this inquiry.” The inquiry officer recommended criminal action against Maneka, in case it is proven that he used abusive language against police personnel.
“In this incident, if Khawar Maneka did abuse the police officials or threatened on phone afterwards, and the DPO had also come to know about it, legal action was warranted. No such step was taken. However, this point remained inconclusive and is a point of further inquiry. If this point is proven beyond reasonable doubt at any later stage, criminal action should be initiated against Khawar Maneka in such eventuality.
The report said that the former DPO did not take any action over the issue from August 5 to August 23. The inquiry officer termed the involvement of Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar in the matter clearly outside the ambit of this inquiry, besides giving a clean chit to IG Police Kaleem Imam and Sahiwal RPO.
“As the former DPO has mentioned in his statement that no official authority (RPO or the IGP) ever directed him to go to the “Dera” of complainant Khawar Maneka, it is perplexing to see why he encouraged this impression,” the report read. “His supplementary statement on Aug 29 2018 further exacerbates the matter as he has mentioned his visit to the CM office on the night of Aug 24 which is clearly outside the ambit of this inquiry.”
However, the inquiry report did not include any statement or affidavit by the provincial chief of the Punjab Police. It also failed to mention as to why the inspector general transferred DPO Gondal at around 1am and on whose insistence.