19 policemen transferred under rotation policy

Nov 11, 2021

LAHORE: The Establishment Division (ED) Islamabad has reshuffled under Rotation Policy-2020 19 police officers serving as deputy inspector generals (DIGs) in BS-20 for spending more than a specified period of 10 years in a province/unit. The two regional police officers (RPOs), additional IG special branch and additional IG traffic police Punjab were also among them besides some other officers who were serving on key positions and were ‘least rotated’ during their last 15-year consecutive posting in the province.

Most of them were mutually rotated in Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa while some were posted in other federal units like Federal Investigation Agency and Pakistan Railways. While issuing notifications in this respect, the government defined the policy stating that it has been declared mandatory for the police officers to serve for two years outside the geographical limits of the station from where they were transferred.

The decision was declared a ‘bold one’ as there were reports that the provincial governments were exerting pressure on the ED to retain the police officers in their respective provinces, citing the reason of shortage of ‘suitable’ officers in BS-20. In some cases, the police officers were using political backing through their respective ministers to keep themselves posted in Punjab despite spending over 15 years in the province.

This year, it was the third phase of the reshuffle made by the federal government under the Rotation Policy 2020. Earlier, the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government had rotated several police officers of DIG rank in January and June under the same policy that was first introduced in 2000 to provide all the officers an opportunity to serve across the federating units.

Later, it was replaced by Rotation Policy 2020 under the Civil Servants Act, 1973, so that rotation of officers among various governments becomes an unavoidable undertaking in which creation of exceptions is minimised. The policy was finalised after consultation with all the governments.

Other than rotation policy, the Punjab government surrendered three more DIGs from the province and directed them to report to the establishment division for further postings. The officers included Punjab DIG Welfare Agha Mohammad Yousaf, DIG Training Suleman Sultan Rana, and DIG Internal Accountability Branch (IAB) Yousuf Malik.

The Punjab government told the establishment division that it required no more services of these three police officers due to ‘certain reasons’. A senior official privy to the entire process said that the Punjab and Sindh provinces always remained in the limelight in the backdrop of transfers of senior police officers under rotation policy.

He said the reason was that it has been a tremendous challenge for the federal government to reshuffle the ‘least rotated’ DIG rank officers serving these provinces. He said the establishment division has been facing strong criticism of ‘pick and choose’ when it failed to go for reshuffle across the board.

During the last two reshuffles [January and June], he said, the federal government had dropped names of many influential DIGs of these two provinces, creating doubts on the transparency of the policy in-question, the official said. Talking about Punjab, he said, DIG Mohammad Zubair Dreshak and Zaeem Iqbal Sheikh were also among those DIG rank officers who had enjoyed key positions in Punjab.

Mr Dreshak was recently posted as DIG Headquarters at Central Police Office, a powerful position that was dealing the transfer postings of officers serving in senior grades and Mr Sheikh as additional IG special branch Punjab. He said Zaeem Iqbal was serving in Punjab for the last 18 years while the posting period of Zubair Dreshak was more than 17 years .

The other police officers who have been transferred under the Rotation Policy 2020 from Punjab included Multan RPO Syed Khurram Ali Shah, additional IG traffic police Sohail Akhtar Sukhera, Sheikhupura RPO Dr Inam Waheed Khan and Mohammad Arslan Malik.

According to the notifications, Zubair Dreshak, Khurram Ali Shah, Zaeem Iqbal Sheikh, Sohail Akhtar Sukhera and Inam Waheed were transferred from Punjab to Sindh and Ahmad Arslan Malik to KP. The official said the transfer of nine DIG rank police officers from Punjab under rotation policy has created a hope for their colleagues who were serving in other provinces as the next phase of the transfers was expected in January next year.

(Daily Dawn)