Senate body seeks final report on Sahiwal incident


–Rehman Malik says police cannot be given license to kill, asks why suspect wasn’t arrested instead

ISLAMABAD: Senate Standing Committee on Interior on Friday condemned the Sahiwal tragedy and said a final report on the incident must be submitted within a month.

Chairing a meeting of the committee at the Parliament House, Rehman Malik said a comprehensive report of the tragic incident must be submitted to the body, which would be examined in detail.

Malik said the upper house had directed the Senate Standing Committee on Interior to immediately conduct an inquiry into the incident and submit its report within a week to the parliament.

He said Islam equated the unjustified killing of any person with that of entire humanity and added three family members were shot dead by the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) in Sahiwal.

Malik was of the view that the police could not be given the license to kill and even if there was evidence against the deceased, the committee must be given a reason for them to not have been arrested instead.

“It is alarming how unarmed civilians were lawlessly killed in broad daylight by Punjab police in front of dozens of citizens,” he said.

Terming the Sahiwal incident painful, Malik said the committee had asked 42 questions from the Ministry of Interior and government of Punjab, out of which some had been answered in writing. He then asked the Punjab inspector general of police (IGP) to submit written replies of the remaining questions at the earliest.

“We are trying to ascertain whether there was any conspiracy behind the Sahiwal incident,” he maintained.

The meeting said sacrifices of law enforcement agencies (LEAs) in the war against terror were commendable, but no one could be allowed to kill innocent civilians.

Earlier, Punjab home secretary, IGP Amjad Javed Saleemi and other senior police officers briefed the committee.

The home secretary said that Zeeshan was “undoubtedly a terrorist” and on CTD’s target.

The IGP said Zeeshan was a member of a very dangerous group and some members of the same had been killed while others arrested.

Malik said in case Zeeshan was a terrorist, evidence must be submitted to the committee. “The committee would prepare recommendations so as to curb such incidents in the future,” he added.