ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Thursday shared a trove of documents and records with an inquiry committee formed to probe ‘newsleak’ which held its first meeting in the Punjab House under the chairmanship of Justice (retd) Aamer Raza Khan.
The government had notified the seven-member committee headed by Justice (retd) Aamer Raza Khan to ascertain the source who leaked information about a high-level meeting between top military and civilian officials to a newspaper.
Govt forms inquiry committee to probe ‘Dawn leaks’
Other members of the committee include Establishment Secretary Tahir Shahbaz, Punjab Ombudsman Najam Saeed, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Punjab Director Dr Usman Anwar and one representative each from the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Military Intelligence (MI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB).
According to sources, the interior minister, besides briefing the committee on the latest developments after the publication of the story, also shared with them related documents and records. The briefing lasted for about an hour.
The committee had been given 30 days to submit its report. According to its terms of reference, the committee is required to inquire into the circumstances surrounding the alleged leak, determine the interests and motives behind the leak and publication of the story, establish the identity of those responsible and apportion blame.
The interior ministry will provide secretarial support to the committee, according to a notification issued with the signature of Joint Secretary (Administration) Salman Qayyum Khan. The committee will record statements of politicians and government officials to fix responsibility.
PTI to table resolution
PTI, while rejecting the composition of the committee, announced tabling a resolution in the Senate during its next session against the formation of the committee.
The decision of the federal government to appoint Justice (retd) Raza as head of the committee has been a source of contention, with some political parties, especially PTI.
“The PTI would challenge the formation of the committee because the committee chairman has close ties with the ruling family as well as connections with the PML-N,” the party said in a statement.
No proof who leaked ‘fabricated news’
“Through the resolution, the PTI will demand constitution of a judicial commission headed by a serving judge of the apex court to probe the matter.
“It will also demand that the commission should send its findings to the chief justice of Pakistan instead of the government.”
Cyril Almeida on the authority of unnamed sources claimed in his story published in English-language daily Dawn on October 6 that the civilian government had warned the military leadership in the high-level huddle of Pakistan’s increasing international isolation for its failure to act against non-state actors.
The story created an impression that the security establishment was reluctant to take action against the non-state actors, particularly those hostile towards India.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 11th, 2016.
Courtesy : Express Tribune