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National

October 31, 2018
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Swati episode: Six facts that need to be probed independently

National

October 31, 2018

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ISLAMABAD: The much-talked -about incident at Federal Minister Azam Swati’s farmhouse involving his poor neighbours from Bajaur has raised six serious questions about the police investigations and the government actions following the brawl between the two parties last week.

On Friday, the capital Police arrested five members of a poor family, including two women, from a slum near Senator Swati’s farmhouse on the complaint of the minister’s son Usman Swati. Usman had lodged report with Shahzad Town Police Station after a physical brawl between his four guards with the family member of his neighbour Niaz Khan.

Two days later, Ziauddin, a 12-year-old member of the same family, was picked up by the police on the intense pressure of the minister’s family, sources confirmed. However, the boy was released after a few hours.

The incident also led to abrupt removal of the Islamabad Inspector General of Police (IGP) Jan Muhammad on the complaint of Federal Minister Senator Azam Khan Swati.

The Supreme Court has already reversed the government decision of IGP's removal and the case is set to be heard today by the apex court.

The whole episode has raised six questions about the police investigations and the government reaction.

1-Who has actually encroached on the government land? Federal Minister Azam Swati has complained to Islamabad police that Niaz Khan has encroached on CDA land so he should be evicted from the area. But talking to The News he himself admitted illegally fencing and occupying six kanal CDA land. 2-Why police registered FIR filed by the son of powerful Minister but failed to register the same from the poor family whose women were also injured in the brawl? Normally police register complaints from both parties and later investigate the matter.

3-Where the actual incident took place? According to police, the incident took place outside the house of Niaz Khan although independent sources confirm the real incident took place inside the house of Bajor family. In this case why the police did not registered case against the Minister’s guard for trespassing on poor family’s house?

4-According to CDA bylaws the Farm House owners can’t have a rear gate. Why Azam Swati was allowed to have illegal gate where the trespassing of the cow allegedly took place?

5-Why a top official of the government visited Azam Swati’s house on Saturday but did not visit the poor family to know the real facts? Is he the Minister for only rich people or poor are also his responsibility?

6-The Minister has lately been visiting police stations in Islamabad to see the condition of detainees but why he did not visit Shahzad Town Police Station to inquire about the condition of 12-year-old Child Ziauddin?

The News tried to seek answers of these questions from relevant people but all parties involved failed to answer these questions. It appears only a judicial inquiry into the incident could reveal the real facts.

The Station Head Officer of Shahzad Town Malik Bashir said the police arrested Niaz his two sons 20-year-old Ahsanuallh and 16-year-old Salahuddin were arrested on Friday along with his wife Maryum Bi Bi and daughter Zakira. However the youngest son nominated in FIR was arrested on Sunday after perusal from the complainant (Usman Swati). He admitted that wife and daughter of Niaz also sustained injuries but denied the claim by Ziauddin that police did not register their FIR. He claimed no complaint was made by the family of Niaz to police. He admitted head of family Niaz was not present during the time of incident but said the arrest was made for investigation. He claimed the fight took place outside the house of Bajor family. The SHO also admitted that guards and employees of Senator Swati were armed and Niaz’s family was not armed with automatic weapons. However he said Maryum attacked the guards with with an axe and as a result two guards were severely injured.

When contacted Federal Minister Azam Swati maintained that the members of Niaz family hurled threat against his guards and attacked his farmhouse, a claim that is contradicted by police.

Swati said he has filed application with CDA for allocation of extra 5 to 6 kanal land adjacent to his farmhouse and the same has been fenced for security purpose. He told The News that Minister of State for Interior visited him after he called him.

The News tried to contact the government official, who visited Swati, for his version but he did not answer the call from this correspondent. Later he was sent questions through messaging service Whatsapp but he did not respond to these messages despite showing digital receipt (blue ticks) of having seen the messages.

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