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ISLAMABAD: Failing to get its directives implemented on the removal of three senior government officials, a caretaker advisor, and two bureaucrats, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has now fixed the related cases for hearing on the coming Tuesday to initiate contempt proceedings against Secretary Establishment Division Inamullah Khan Dharejo and Secretary Cabinet Division Kamran Ali Afzal.

According to the cause list issued by the poll entity on Saturday, notices were issued to the secretaries of the Establishment Division and the Cabinet Division for initiating contempt proceedings against them on Tuesday over non-compliance with the ECP directives over removal of Advisor to the Caretaker Prime Minister on Establishment Ahad Cheema.

On Friday, the ECP wrote to the secretary Establishment Division intimating him to appear before the commission on Tuesday over non-compliance with the commission’s directives regarding removal of inspector general of police (IGP) and deputy commissioner Islamabad.

Political parties, including PTI: SC asks ECP to ensure a level playing field

On December 19, the ECP directed the caretaker government to remove Ahad Cheema from his caretaker federal cabinet position with immediate effect on the grounds that his official position “may influence the holding of free, fair and transparent elections.”

Cheema was part of the previous federal government of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM).

The ECP, through its order, directed the secretary Cabinet Division to issue the notification for Cheema’s removal immediately, which was not done.

The commission issued this order on a petition moved by Aziz UD Din Kaka Khel for the removal of Cheema, Caretaker Privatisation Minister Fawad Hassan Fawad and the then Principal Secretary to Caretaker PM Dr Tauqir Shah.

Shah stepped down from his position in October. Consequently, the case against him was dropped.

The case related to Fawad was adjourned till December 21. On the given date, the case was adjourned again for indefinite period due to the absence of the petitioner.

On October 24, the ECP directed the secretary Establishment Division to transfer IGP Islamabad Dr Akbar Nasir Khan and DC Islamabad Irfan Nawaz Memon. On October 26, the ECP again directed the Establishment Division to transfer the IGP and DC Islamabad without any further delay. Moreover, on November 21, the Interior Ministry wrote to Establishment Division to remove the two officials from their present positions in the light of the ECP’s directives. However, neither the two officials were removed, nor any reason was given by the Establishment Division over non-compliance with the ECP directives.

As per customary practice on its part, the electoral body orders reshuffling the civil servants and other government functionaries, occupying key slots in the federal and provincial departments once caretaker setup is in place ahead of the general elections in order to ensure transparency and fairness in the polls.

On October 2, the secretary establishment and Secretary Interior Aftab Akbar Durrani briefed the ECP that the officers concerned of federal bureaucracy, including those assigned to provinces, belonging to occupational groups, were reshuffled as per the commissions’ directives.

Interestingly, the secretary establishment was appointed by the former PDM government. Incumbent IGP Punjab Dr Usman Anwar, Chief Secretary Punjab Zahid Akhtar Zaman and IGP Islamabad are among the top officers who were appointed by the former federal government.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Johnny Walker Dec 24, 2023 03:04pm
Who is the ECP trying to fool or are they covering themselves for future criminal charges for negligence of duty? These ex bureaucrats have been appointed by the same head honcho that appointed the CEC head.
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Aslam Tanoli Dec 24, 2023 04:58pm
ECP thinks people are in 1990s
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zh Dec 24, 2023 10:07pm
The Munshi is trying to show his sham neutrality.
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