PESHAWAR: Fasihuddin is the most misunderstood police officer I have ever seen in my life, once remarked former Inspector General of Police Muhammad Akram.
Fasih worked under his command some 20 years back. “The reason may not be of anyone else but of his own. He doesn’t know the tricks and games of this world; rather remains engaged in his intellectual pursuits, spirituality and occult sciences,” he said.
Hailing from the spiritual family of Tor Baba settled in Dir and Bajaur, Fasih carries a taste and knack for mysticism, poetry, Islamic knowledge and modern sciences. His contribution to promote education and learning in his tribe, Uthmankhel, led him to lead this huge tribe as a patron-in-chief. The strain goes through the whole family and all hisbrothers and nephews are highly qualified; many of them are in various government jobs.
Besides his family background, he is fond of literature and art. His recent poetry book ‘Da Janoon Chapay’ (the waves of madness) received a great applause from critics. President of Pakistan Progressive Writers, Salim Raz, termed him second incarnation of Ghani Khan, the renowned poet-philosopher and a brother of Khan Abdul Wali Khan.
However, interestingly all his three books, Khama Bajosh (the boiling pen), Sehra Mein Azaan (the call in desert) and Safar Ki Dhol (the dust of journey), have been written in such a style that rarely one can differentiate it from the language of Dehli and Lucknow.
Hardly any Urdu scholar—right from Karachi to Quetta and Lahore to Islamabad—has not appreciated his critical essays and research-based columns on a variety of topics—from international affairs to satire and virulent criticism on his own police department.
Some of his books were recommended for libraries of Pakistan Army and for schools and colleges in KP by the government. He doesn’t miss the opportunity to write training manuals for the police which are used in the Police Training Colleges, Quetta and Hangu, where he served as commandant.
On his various training manuals, former DG Intelligence Bureau Syed Wadood Shah wrote that never in police such documents were produced by any police officer in Pakistan. Former IG, KP Nasir Khan Durrani was very fond of his contribution towards police training and education and gave him an ‘outstanding ACR’ in this regard.
Another aspect of his contribution is the initiation of Pakistan Society of Criminology in 2008, and the only research-based and HEC-recognized quarterly the Pakistan Journal of Criminology, in 2009 which he initiated and promoted with his own resources to bring scholars and practitioners to one forum for a dialogue on research-based policy making.
Recently in 2013, he established the first and only research library in Peshawar which now comprises more than 15,000 books and journals. They are freely available to students, writers and scholars.
Due to the above contribution to the field of scholarship and policing sciences, he has been invited to dozens of international forums, right from University of Athabasca, Canada and George Mason University, USA to National Police Agency, Japan and Institute of Criminology in Australia—to name a few.
He has been a member of many international societies of criminology and policing, and recently he was appointed as Senior Research Fellow at the Peoples Public Security University, Beijing and a visiting professor in Shanghai University in China. Till now, he has presented his research papers in more than 40 international conferences and seminars.
Having greatly engrossed in his pursuit of academics and spirituality and getting such a national and international reputation, he remains aloof and indifferent to the dynamics of field postings and lucrative jobs.
He thereby has attracted jealousies from his fellow officers. It was such an incident when one of our colleagues, Umar Cheema, wrote an article in 2010 against the work and character of Fasihuddin. The said article was exploited by his rival officers and Fasihuddin was confronted with a number of enquiries by the Establishment Division, NAB and others, without realizing the pain of double jeopardy.
He, unfortunately, suffered a lot in terms of promotion and postings and of course, his family and small children, though this was not the intention of Umar.
Fasihuddin boldly faced all the hardships and was finally exonerated of all the charges by the Establishment Division in August 2013 and by NAB in Nov. 2015. His viewpoint stood vindicated in face of what was written and propagated against him by his rival officers. He proved to be a man of courage, honor and integrity. During a recent meeting held here at the library of Fasihuddin, Umar expressed his dismay and regret that Fasihuddin went through due to his articles. Fasihuddin graciously accepted this as a dictate of Pakhtoon tradition and offered his services to work jointly to eradicate crimes and promote a better working relationship between the police and the media. Fasihuddin has been lauded by his seniors in police and army for his services over the time. He has received commendation letters from several of them.
Ihsan Ghani, current DG IB, once admired him as “an energetic, committed and innovative colleague. His mind is full of ideas and whenever given a chance, he puts his knowledge and theories into the most cost-effective policies and actions.”
Malik Naveed Khan, former IG KP, remarked about him as an officer with “keen interest in carrying out original research as a practitioner and then translating his field experiences into an academic work.”
Syed Akhtar Ali Shah, former home secretary KP, acknowledges his contribution in research saying he has been “spearheading the body of professionals in the area of criminology and policing science.”
Former army chief Gen (R) Raheel Sharif wrote an appreciation letter and declared his thoughts “reflect patriotism and affection for Pakistan in general and Pakistan Army in particular.”
Former Lieutenant General (Retd) Shafqaat Ahmed termed his Pakistan Journal of Criminology “a well-researched and appropriately presented document of good practical value.” Justice Dost Muhammad Khan, present caretaker Chief Minister of KP, lauded his contribution to the field of research “source of information and would benefit the bench and the bar.”
Former national security advisor Lieutenant General Nasser Khan Janjua wrote in an appreciation letter that his research work “looks to be a blend of high quality intellectual abilities and team effort.”