Rehman Malik writes to PM to constitute judicial commission on Sahilwal killings

Islamabad: Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior Senator Rehman Malik Thursday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan demanding him on the behalf of Committee the constitution of judicial commission to probe matter of killing of four people by a team of Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) near Sahiwal on January 19, 2019. In his letter Senator Malik has written “Dear Mr. Prime Minister, I would like to state that consequent to a media report regarding killing of four persons by a team of CTD officials near Sahiwal on 19 January 2019, the Senate Standing Committee on Interior while taking serious notice of the incident, requested the Ministry of Interior on 20 January 2019 to provide information on the incident. Thereafter, this matter was again discussed/taken up by the Committee in its meeting held on 21st January 2019 and the recommendations of the Committee were submitted to the Chairman Senate to be placed before the House.” Senator Malik further writes “On 21st January 2019, however, Senator Muhammad Javed Abbasi raised the matter of Point of Public Importance in the House regarding “killing of four persons by a team of CTD officials near Sahiwal on 19th January, 2019”. The Chairman of the Senate, keeping in view the discussions in the House and the letter submitted by the Committee in the matter, announced his Ruling of the Chair in the Senate, which is reproduced hereunder for ready reference:- “Killing of four people and injuring minor children by a team of CTD officials near Sahiwal on 19-01-2019 is a matter of sufficient public importance which has sent a wave of resentment all over the country. Therefore, the matter is referred to Senate Standing Committee on Interior with directions to probe the facts and fix the responsibility on those who acted beyond their legal mandate. The Committee is also directed to suggest a plan for the welfare of the children as well.” Rejecting the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) formed by Punjab Government on Sahiwal incident, Senator A. Rehman Malik has written “The Senate Standing Committee on Interior in pursuance of the Ruling of the Chairman Senate, called a meeting on 25th January, 2019 to discuss the said matter and consequently the Committee unanimously rejected the JIT, constituted by the Government of Punjab, to probe the incident.” “The Senate Standing Committee on Interior also heard the family members of the victims of Sahiwal incident on 29th January, 2019, who overwhelmingly expressed their serious reservations and non-confidence in the JIT constituted by the Government of Punjab to probe the Sahiwal incident,” added Senator Malik. He writes that the Committee, after detailed deliberations and discussions in its consecutive three meetings, was unanimous in its views that all the stakeholders and victim families have shown no confidence in JIT; hence it would be appropriate to adopt an impartial and transparent alternate course to unearth the facts and circumstances leading to the action of the CTD.  He added that the Committee was of the view that these objectives could only be achieved through probe by a Judicial Commission. The Senator writes “It was a unanimous decision of the members of Senate Standing Committee on Interior who are consisting of senators from all the parties as well as the demands of the families of the victims that the government must ensure a just, impartial and speedy justice to the victims and their families in accordance with the law. Senator Malik writes “In the capacity of Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior, I would like to convey the unanimous decision of the Committee with the request to appoint/constitute a JUDICIAL COMMISSION headed by a senior Judge of a High Court with well-defined TORs to probe the incident, circumstances leading to the incident and the role of the officials of CTD involved in the incident.” While reinforcing the committee demand of formation of the Judicial Commission, Senator A. Rehman Malik demands that it is requested that a judicial commission as desired by the Committee may kindly be constituted immediately and notified in the larger interest of natural justice. Earlier, Senator Malik presented the Interim Report of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior regarding the killing of four people by CTD officials near Sahiwal and the Interim Report was laid down before the House. While speaking in the Senate, he said that he was thankful to Chairman Senate and all members of the committee for providing cooperation and extending full support to the committee in probing the matter. He thanked secretary senate for providing transport to the victim families of Sahiwal incident in their transportation from Lahore to Islamabad to attend the Committee meeting. He said he will submit the final report soon the probe is completed adding that he has demanded solid evidence from CTD proving Zeeshan as terrorist. He said that he would like to brief the house on power point once the probe into matter is completed.