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Wednesday April 17, 2024

LHC dismisses Ghulam Mahmood Dogar's plea challenging suspension as CCPO

LHC objects how it could hear Ghulam Mahmood Dogar's plea as case falls under purview of Supreme Court

By Shahid Hussain
November 08, 2022
Ghulam Mahmood Dogar. — Twitter/File
Ghulam Mahmood Dogar. — Twitter/File 

LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Tuesday declared Ghulam Mahmood Dogar's plea against his suspension as Lahore Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) inadmissible, saying that the court doesn't have the authority to hear the case.

Dogar filed a plea in the high court on Monday, alleging that he was being targetted by the Centre for booking two federal ministers in terrorism cases in Lahore's Green Town. He said that he was never informed about the notice issued for his suspension as the Lahore CCPO.

At the outset of the hearing, Justice Muzamil Akhtar Shabir questioned whether it is in the high court's jurisdiction to look into the order of Dogar's suspension.

Meanwhile, Dogar’s counsel contended that his client was targeted as he had launched legal action against a federal minister. Protecting a civil servant’s right in matters involving two governments is important, he added.

However, the court asked how the LHC could hear the case as it falls under the purview of Supreme Court.

At this, the lawyer told the judge that the court can review the case.

However, the federal government’s lawyer interjected and said that the suspension orders were issued after CCPO Dogar did not report to the federal government within three days.

“Is there a reason written in the suspension order,” asked the petitioner’s lawyer.

Justice Shabbir then intervened and observed that the court’s objection was how the high court had the authority to hear the case. He then added that the case was outside the court’s purview and disposed of the case as the plea was inadmissible.

CCPO will have to leave charge immediately: Tarar

Soon after the decision, Special Assistant to Prime Minister Attaullah Tarar tweeted that the police force is not liable to follow the orders of CCPO Dogar and would have to leave the post immediately.

“All orders issued by him will be illegal. Punjab Police which is an organised force should not be made into a tiger force. It is not Imran Khan's personal force that it can do whatever he says. Suspended officer cannot wear uniform, charge will have to be relinquished,” said Tarar.

Dogar's plea

CCPO Dogar, is at centre of the federal and provincial government's feud, and had approached LHC against his suspension and cancellation of the federal government's suspension and transfer notification.

On October 28, the centre — via a letter — had ordered CCPO Lahore to report to the establishment division within three days. However, Punjab refused to transfer his services to the federal government.

As per the letter, the province's chief minister, Pervaiz Elahi, wanted to keep Dogar in the province to ensure security arrangements during PTI's ongoing long march, the arrival of Sikh pilgrims from India via the Wagah Border to celebrate 100 years of Saka Panja Sahib, and the Tablighi Jamaat's congregation.

After the provincial government's refusal, on November 5 the federal government suspended the officer once again this time over his alleged "failure" to protect Punjab's Governor House.

The establishment division of the government issued a notification to suspend the 21-grade officer of the police service.

“Ghulam Mahmood Dogar, a BS-21 officer of the Police Service of Pakistan presently serving under Government of Punjab, is placed under suspension, with immediate effect and until further orders,” the notification issued by the establishment division had read.

The development came a day after the PTI's supporters' violent protest outside the Governor House in Lahore against the attack on the party's chairman Imran Khan.