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As for the lack of disciple, it is ironical, indeed, that of all people former CCPO Sheikh should be complaining about it. Soon after his new appointment he had told his subordinates to ignore the orders of then IGP Shoaib Dastigir who felt compelled to resign in protest over political interference in his department's administrative matters, in particular government insistence on Sheikh's appointment. He has regularly been humiliating subordinate officers, too. Last month, a sub inspector chose to tender his resignation after the former CCPO called him 'khotay ka bacha' (son of a donkey) during an official meeting. Then SSP Liaqat Malik was transferred for "disciplinary reasons" following a heated exchange of words with Sheikh. In another incident a head constable and a sub inspector lodged complaints of mistreatment against him. His style of functioning has created considerable unease in Lahore Police. Yet he now wants to bring in army-like court martial to implement his peculiar brand of discipline whereas, considering his penchant for hurting public sentiment and undermining police morale, it is he who needs be sidelined for behaviour unbecoming of the office he holds.

But the government has no intention to do that. In fact after his insensitive victim-blaming remarks federal minister Asad Umar and PM's adviser on accountability Shahzad Akbar came out in his defence, with the latter saying an unnecessary controversy was created out of the CCPO's statement. Why the ruling PTI would want to retain such a controversial police officer in Lahore seems to suggest his services are needed for certain purposes.

Rashid Gill (Lahore)

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020