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26 September 2017 Last updated 8 hours ago

Senior police official appointed FIA Sindh director despite case pending in SC

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Wednesday announced that Amir Ahmed Sheikh has been appointed as the new director FIA Sindh Zone. Sheikh has been transferred to this position from his former post as Deputy Inspector General of traffic in Sindh.

Following the procedure, the director general of FIA had sent a request to the Establishment Division for Sheikh's induction.

The appointment comes in spite of a case pending in the Supreme Court regarding the objections raised against the deputation of Police Service of Pakistan (PSP) and officers of other departments to the FIA.

In July 2016, former chief justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali had instituted the suo motu proceedings on an application by FIA officer Kamran Ataullah and others of different ranks.

The application stated that the FIA was a specialised investigation agency dealing with technical/white collar crimes that required the services of experienced and trained officers to efficiently handle and deal with such crimes.

In their petition, the FIA officers had explained that the method, qualifications and other conditions for appointment to different posts in the FIA were laid down in the Jan 2, 2015 Gazette of Pakistan Extraordinary, under the Ministry of Interior in exercise of the powers conferred by Rule 3 (2) of the Civil Servants (Appointment, Promotion & Transfer) Rules, 1973.

The petitioners had also argued that the transfer and posting of PSP cadre officers to FIA amounted to denial and disobedience of the guidelines given by the Supreme Court of Pakistan in 2011 and would ultimately cause serious losses to their service career and other officers of the FIA.

They contended that this practice went against the norms of law and the principles of natural justice, causing serious losses to the service career of the appellants.

In response to the suo motu proceedings, the federal government had cautioned that prohibiting such postings would adversely affect the performance of FIA.

A report submitted to the court by the Establishment Division had argued that transferring PSP officers against PSP cadre in the FIA neither blocks the promotion of FIA officers nor violates any judgement of the Supreme Court.

It had said the postings were only for a specific tenure borne on PSP cadre (BS-18 to 22) and hence did not amount to absorption, induction or deputation of PSP officers in FIA.

The case has since remained dormant and no verdict has been passed regarding the matter.