|Friday, 06 July 2012 13:53|
PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court (PHC) has asked the federal interior ministry to submit a written reply to the court on whether the section 3 of the Frontier Constabulary (FC) Act 1915 was still functional after the devolution of powers to the provinces under the 18th Amendment.
The court also sought reply on whether federal government could deploy FC outside of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), as it was a provincial force.
The court summoned the attorney general of Pakistan to appear in person to assist the court on the issue.
A PHC division bench comprising Chief Justice (CJ) PHC Dost Muhammad Khan and Justice Khalid Mehmood also sought reply from the secretary interior Nargis Sethi, while hearing a petition of KP government seeking relocation of FC to the province.
FC was raised by the British to guard the buffer zone – the border between the tribal and settled areas of the province. Today, the provincial government needs this force to guard this area from intrusion of militants.
Section Officer Arifullah Wazir, an official of the federal interior ministry appeared before the court with a written reply of his ministry, in response to questions raised by the court in the last hearing.
Wazir informed the court that 95 FC platoons had been deputed outside KP of which 45 were deployed in Karachi, 35 in Islamabad and 15 in Gilgit Baltistan.
He said that 367 FC platoons had been deputed within the KP and Fata, of which 78 were assisting provincial police and 109 were active in different army operations in Fata.
He said FC was a federal force and that under section 3 of the FC Act 1915, the force could be deputed anywhere in the country.
However, CJ Khan remarked that the situation in KP was worse than that of the other provinces.