Wednesday December 06, 2023

Provincial police guarding Banigala confuses ICT police

A total of 63 police personnel, including 57 from KP Police and six from Gilgit-Baltistan are presently performing duties at Banigala

August 15, 2022
Security personnel deployed near Banigala can be seen this file photo.
Security personnel deployed near Banigala can be seen this file photo.

ISLAMABAD: The deployment of police from other provinces for the security of PTI chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan has put the Islamabad Police in an awkward situation, as they don’t know under whose command they are working, sources in the capital police confided to The News.

A total of 63 police personnel, including 57 from the KP Police and six from Gilgit-Baltistan, are presently performing their duties at Banigala — the residence of former prime minister Imran Khan — without any legal cover or requisition from the ICT Police.

These personnel are in addition to 155 Islamabad Police personnel and officers deployed at Banigala. Under the laid-down laws and rules of business, any number of police from other provinces and states (GB and AJ&K) can come to the federal capital only if a requisition has been sent out for deployment by the federal government on the request of the ICT Police.

In this particular case, the ICT Police have neither sent out any request to the minister for interior for deployment of any number of police force from these provinces or states, nor the interior ministry has issued any such directions to the provinces and states to send their forces to the federal capital, said the sources.

It has been learnt that the ICT Police have written a letter to the interior ministry to look into the situation and sort the matter out because the presence of police from other provinces and states might cause confusion, leading to serious consequences.

The letter says: “It has been observed that some provincial governments are giving the impression that they are sending the provincial police or Constabulary to Islamabad to protect former prime minister Imran Khan”.

The letter said some provincial governments were trying to impede the administrative and constitutional affairs of the federal police and were claiming that their police personnel would be deployed in Islamabad for protection of the former prime minister.

“It’s tantamount to interfering with the legal and administrative powers of the federal police,” says the letter. The letter has urged the interior ministry to tell the provincial governments to refrain from enunciations and expressing such views and taking such steps.

“The federal police will not allow the police of any province or state to enter the limits of Islamabad without obtaining permission or performing any duty without specifying its nature,” the ICT Police said.

They said a report concerning the security arrangements for Imran Khan had been sent to the relevant quarters of the government. The report — submitted by the DIG Security Division, Islamabad — says a total of 238 personnel have been deployed for the security of former premier out of which 155 are from the ICT Police and the rest from the KP, Punjab and GB.

The sources made it clear that under the rules, the ICT Police requisition any assistance and uniformed personnel from any other sister organisation according to the laid-down laws and procedures.

The requisitioned force are to report at the Police Lines Headquarters, Islamabad, and their engagements are spelled out. The equipment and logistics provided to the force are noted down in the police registers.

The letter also clarifies that the requisitioned personnel with their internal commands are placed under the local operational command and this command articulation is also clear, as policing and discharge of the related functions is responsibility of Islamabad Capital Police in ICT jurisdiction. “When the army is called by the civil administration, it has a specific process which is in vogue and in the knowledge of all key stakeholders,” says the letter.

According to the letter, these armed personnel — presently deployed at the residence of Imran Khan — are in Islamabad without any requisition, mandate, rules of engagement and command articulation.

It says there is no justification for deployment of police personnel from anywhere outside of Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) and they must be sent back to their parent organizations. The respective command of these personnel may be directed to follow the laid-down procedure and rules or withdraw their forces from the ICT to avoid any untoward incident due to this anomaly, the letter further says.