FIA DG begins probe against 11 officials
LAHORE: To break the nexus between Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials and human smugglers, FIA Director General Bashir Memon has launched an action against the agency officials allegedly involved in human-trafficking and corrupt practices, The News has learnt.
The DG withdrew charge from 11 FIA officials including two assistant directors, two inspectors and seven other low-ranking officials on October 27, directing them to report to the headquarters, besides ordering enquiries against them, which are under way currently.
Among those made OSDs include Mubashir Ahmad Tirmizi, Assistant Director of FIA NR3C Islamabad, Muhammad Abid Hussain, Assistant Director of FIA AHTC Islamabad Zone, Inspector Raja Wajid of FIA CCC Islamabad, Inspector Saeeda Bibi of FIA Islamabad Zone, ASI Arshad Maqbool of FIA Islamabad Zone, Head Constable Faisal Aziz of Security Branch, FIA HQ, Head Constable Mehmood Riaz (husband of Inspector Saeeda Bibi) from FIA Islamabad Zone, Head Constable Abdullah Sharif of Islamabad Zone, Constable Sami Ullah Khan Niazi of Security Branch, FIA HQ, Constable Jehangir Hussain Kazmi of FIA Islamabad Zone and Constable Zafar Iqbal of Islamabad Zone.
The DG also formed a high-powered committee led by Director Cyber Crimes Cap (retd) Muhammad Shoaib to investigate the assistant directors and inspectors. The committee would also finalize the case FIR No 238/14 registered against FIA officials including AD Abid Hussain at the earliest.
Another official, Deputy Director NR3C Islamabad Imran Saaed, is investigating junior officials including ASIs, Head Constables and Constables.
However, no action has yet been taken against those FIA officials allegedly involved in clearance of Afghan nationals at Islamabad Airport.
The British High Commission had written a letter to the prime minister’s special assistant on aviation on September 25, 2014 that around 18 Afghan nationals including women had reached Heathrow Airport from Islamabad Airport with fake British travel documents.
On the orders of the then interior minister Ch Nisar Ali Khan, the matter was investigated and an FIR No 238/14 was registered against FIA officials including Abid Hussain as he was the Shift In-charge on September 20 when Afghan nationals travelled to the UK.
Later, Abid not only got promotion but was also appointed as head of Anti-Human Trafficking Cell where his own case was registered in 2014.
However, no action was taken against those FIA officials responsible for immigration clearance on September 21 including the then Shift Incharges Tariq Mehmood (9: 00 AM till 9: 00 PM) and Abdur Rehman (9PM till 9AM). Tariq Mehmood now is serving as Deputy Director Immigration FIA HQ whereas Abdur Rehman is serving as Assistant Director at Islamabad Airport.
The DG FIA wasn’t available for comments when contacted by this correspondent.
A senior official close to DG, requesting anonymity, told The News that the incumbent DG has initiated a countrywide crackdown against the FIA officials soon after forming his team. He also prepared a future plan of action for FIA to rid it of corruption.
The official added that making Special Investigation Unit (SIU), which had become a place of minting money and blackmailing people, redundant and ordering lodging FIRs against accused FIA officials were among the first few steps the incumbent DG took soon after assuming the charge, he further mentioned.
It was also very surprising for DG that an AD against whom an FIR was registered on the charges of human trafficking was heading anti-human trafficking cell, he said, adding, the FIA head would go after every accused official who ever found involved in corruption and corrupt practices, the official added.
When contacted, Assistant Director Mubashir Tirmizi said he was transferred on his own request and denied having any involvement in human trafficking activities.
Similarly, Assistant Director Abid Hussain said he has faced the enquiry since 2014 and a court already exonerated him of those charges in 2016. He said he has never been involved in any dealings with any accused human smuggler of Rawalpindi.
To a question, Abid said he was ready to face yet another enquiry but actions must also be taken against those FIA officials responsible for immigration clearance on September 21, 2014.
“Neither the enquiry team ever summoned them for statements nor any explanation was sought from them”, he claimed. “You should ask this question from (Interior) Ministry”, the FIA official remarked when asked how he got promotion in 2015 at a time when a case was already pending against him.
When contacted, Assistant Director Tariq Mehmood refused to comment on the issue saying he wouldn’t say a word on the matter. Similarly, Assistant Director Abdur Rehman said he had no role in clearance of those Afghani nationals as the timing of his shift had ended when the flight was cleared.