KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said the manner police handled the case of slain Irshad Ranjhani in Karachi has proved his worst fears that the independence available to the Sindh Police through court orders would make the province a virtual police state.
The CM said he has no control over the provincial police force since it was given the independence to work by the apex judiciary. “See this will happen if there is no political oversight over police and it has started to act independently,” said the Chief Minister during his remarks in the Sindh Assembly on Monday over the recent murder of Irshad Ranjhani by a UC chairman that sparked widespread protests by the Sindhi nationalist parties. He said that there seems to be a different set of laws in Sindh when it comes to governing the police in the province while there are separate police laws for other provinces. He said there is no criticism in other provinces when police chiefs are transferred even in quick succession, but he cannot act like that in Sindh as police here enjoys independence.
Murad said he had asked the IG police to conduct probe into the Irshad Ranjhani killing but the Police committee has not yet completed its inquiry. “Even before completion of the inquiry the deceased was termed a dacoit by the police and this is totally unacceptable,” he said. “Then the police said there were FIRs registered against the deceased and if that is the case then the police should better start shooting all against whom cases are lodged,” he said. He said the police is also involved in the murder of Irshad Ranjhani the way it handled the issue. “I was really shaken up by the incident the way police reacted to it and I would myself go and lodge an FIR against the policemen involved in this act,” he said. He said the police took the severely injured Irshad Ranjhani to Shah Lateef Police station instead of rushing him to the hospital. “After keeping him at the police station for 45 minutes, the police shifted him to Jinnah Hospital where he died,” he said. “The way police handled the case shows it is completely devoid of humanity.”
Murad said this is intolerable that the house passes legislation for immediate medical treatment of the injured while police violate the spirit of this bill by delaying the provision of medical aid to the injured Ranjhani. He said the police also delayed the arrest of the UC chairman responsible for the murder of Irshad Ranjhani. The chief minister sought the assistance of the house to immediately change the police law as he does not want Sindh to be turned into a police state and this cannot happen under the present regime. He said if the house allows he would also meet the chief justices of Supreme Court of Pakistan and the Sindh High Court to apprise them of the need to change the police laws as otherwise Sindh would become a police state.
Shah said that he also requires the backing of the house for action against the police personnel who showed sheer criminal negligence while handling the Ranjhani case.