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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Who killed Aziz Memon? DIG Sindh refuses to answer

Aziz Memon was killed a few days ago and the local PPP leadership is alleged to have played a role in his murder. The slain journalist reported that PPP had rented hundreds of poor people from nearby villages to welcome Bilawal Bhutto during his long march on the train from Karachi to Larkana last year

Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Hyderabad who was attending a ceremony on Wednesday was faced by media personnel afterwards who tried to question him over the ongoing murder investigations of journalist Aziz Memon, local media reported.

The DIG, visibly distraught refused to answer the questions, he said investigations were as yet underway to determine the perpetrators and a joint investigation team was also being formulated on the matter.

He said that if something came up in the investigations then swift and prompt action will surely be taken against the perpetrators, whoever they may be.

The Sindh government was “unhappy” with him over several issues relating to the recruitment of constables and suspension of police officers

Earlier on February 24, a local court in Kandiaro on Monday sent an accused held during the probe into the murder of journalist Aziz Memon’s on a three-day remand.

According to details, an accused-Awais- was presented before the court for an extension in his remand from Mehrabpur police authorities. The court extended his remand for three more days and directed the officials to submit a report on progress in the case by February 27.

Bilawal agrees to form a judicial commission

Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, Chairman Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), said on last Wednesday that the PPP government in Sindh was willing to form a judicial commission to probe the murder of a Sindhi journalist Aziz Memon, advising journalists not to become part of a “conspiracy” against democratic forces.

Read more: Mystery Behind Murder of Memon Journalist, Fingers Pointed Towards PPP

Addressing a press conference, Bilawal said if the family of the slain journalist wanted a judicial commission to be formed, the government will form one. “If the family wants a specific police officer, who they believe is credible, to investigate, we will assign that officer to the case,” he added.

After the murder of Memon, who “exposed the train march” of PPP chief, fingers were pointed at the Sindh government led by PPP. However, the party denied such accusations.

Bilawal also distanced his party from the murder and said the video about the train march was made a year ago. He advised journalists not to “unwillingly” become part of a conspiracy against “democratic forces” and work with its “allies” to strengthen the democratic institutions.

Read more: Journalist who reported Rented Gathering in Bilawal’s Welcome Found Murdered

PPP’s chairman said the allegations on the PPP government was a part of a conspiracy and added that such tactics were being used against our journalists who do real reporting, whether in Pakistan or abroad. “But I want to make a request before you all: this story does not end with Aziz Memon. This story is not limited to one Aziz Memon. You should ask who filed terrorism cases against Sindh’s journalists. You should also ask if this is only happening in Sindh,” he added.

Politicized police?

It is worth noting that the PPP is accused of controlling police for political purposes. Sindh government transferred Allah Dino Khawaja (a.k.a A. D. Khawaja) back in 2017, but the decision was challenged by the civil society in the court. The Sindh High Court and Supreme Court of Pakistan turned down the provincial government’s decision due to flimsy grounds on which the government based its case. The Sindh government was “unhappy” with him over several issues relating to the recruitment of constables and suspension of police officers. Besides, A.D. Khawaja was not willing to transfer and post ‘politically wanted’ police officers to some constituencies before by-elections.

Quite recently, PPP was alleged Dr. Kaleem Imam, Sindh’s IGP, of incompetence. Well-placed sources told GVS that the controversy broke out after the Sindh government transferred three senior police officials including Shikarpur’s Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Dr. Rizwan Ahmed. The IGP was not happy and repeatedly conveyed to the CM that the decision should have been based upon ‘merit’, claim sources. Moreover, Dr. Imam had also asked the provincial government for initiating action against 10 to 12 senior police officers on charges of “serious misconduct” but no action was taken.

Read more: Sharjeel Memon indictment shows the discriminatory role institutions play for PPP and PML-N

Retired police officers believe that the Sindh government wants total control over police department to maintain its ‘political strength’ across the province. “The provincial chief is always appointed on political grounds. But no police chief completely surrenders himself before the provincial government as no officer ever wants his credibility to be tarnished like that,” said a former police chief.

However, it is evident to note that electoral politics in rural areas of Sindh or any other province demands local politicians to have considerable control over police. Elected lawmakers in the Sindh or Punjab demand their respective provincial governments to appoint district police heads as per their choice. The same political necessity did not allow the current government in Punjab to reform police.