ARY anchor Iqrarul Hassan faces govt wrath for exposing poor security at Sindh Assembly
Hasan, the host of popular program Sar-e-Aam, was arrested on orders of Sindh Home Minister Sohail Anwar Siyal for highlighting poor security at the assembly, but was released on bail a day after.
The program anchor entered the assembly premises Friday noon along with one of the crew members carrying a firearm, without any checking by security deployed at the building.
During the session, Iqrar asked his crew member to unveil the pistol and showed it to Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani, thus stirring up a debate in the House.
WATCH: Sting operation exposes security cover at Sindh Assembly
Durrani ruled that no one including journalists would be allowed to enter the assembly without undergoing security check from this point on.
His order was followed by detention of Iqrar and his team as security personnel at the Sindh Assembly encircled the anchor and took him out of the hall. He was later arrested by the police and was moved to Arambagh Police Station.
Home minister orders arrest of ARY sting operation team
Speaking in the House, Sindh Home Minister Sohail Anwar Siyal said inquiry will be conducted on the matter. He also ordered arrest of all those who conducted a sting operation in the assembly.
He constituted a committee headed by DIG South to probe the matter. The minister also suspended security in-charge of the Sindh Assembly.
‘Perfume’ bribe to enter the assembly gallery
One of the Sar-e-Aam team members revealed that sting operation team reached assembly building corridor and sought permission to enter the hall. The guard deployed at the entrance asked for a ‘favour’.
The team members gave two bottles of perfume and he let the team go to sit in the assembly gallery.
The guard was apparently pleased when one of the ARY team members introduced himself as Mirpurkhas resident. The security guard responded: “We will let you sit in the gallery not for just 15 minutes. But for an hour. Becauseyou belong to Mirpurkhas.”
“Sitara-e-Jurrat sought for Iqrar”
MQM leader Farooq Sattar has demanded the government to award Sitara-e-Jurrat for Iqrarul Hasan for his brave move to raise such a core issue.
He hailed Iqrar for highlighting something that government institutions could not address.
PTI Karachi leader Ali Zaidi strongly condemned arrest of Iqrarul Hasan’s arrest and demanded his immediate release. He said the SIndh government should be thankful to the anchor for raising such an important issue.
Zaidi said it was shameful that the government didnt consider improving security at the assembly and instead arrested the man who highlighted it.
Chief minister Sindh stonewalls query over arrest
In a brief interaction with media, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah said security responsibility in the assembly lied with speaker. He stonewalled queries regarding arrest of the anchor and left.
PTI lawmaker Samar Ali Khan said it often happens when security guards ask an MPA for checking, he replies with utter disdain in demonstration of his influence. This practice should now end, he emphasised.
Privilege motion filed for ‘poor security’ at assembly
Khurram Sherzaman of PTI submitted a privilege motion at the Sindh Assembly secretariat. He said all security guards deployed at the assembly have failed to provide security to lawmakers. He said it was a big concern in view of the current law and order situation.
He requested the House members to constitute a committee to review security arrangements at the assembly building and take necessary steps for its redressal.
‘Assembly should pass resolution to praise Iqrar’
Senior political analyst Dr. Shahid Masood blasted the provincial government of Sindh for spending millions on security of ministers and parliamentarians, while neglecting the Sindh Assembly’s security.
ARY anchorperson Arshad Sharif said the assembly must pass a resolution to acknowledge initiative of Iqrar for bringing poor security issue to light.
FixIt campaigner Alamgir Khan reaches police station in support of Iqrar
FixIt campaigner Alamgir Khan lashed out at the government, saying Rs 64.4 billion budget for law and order had proved to be good for nothing.
He said feudals in Sindh are using their infleunce to suppress the common man’s voice. “I am here alone” and said he would remain there until he meet Iqrar.
“I will mobilize my team to ensure release of Iqrar and his team.”
He said a movie was created and it faced ban just because it used a word “Saeen”.
Protests against Iqrar’s detention
Scores of people gathered outside Arambagh Police station and demanded immediate release of Iqrar.
They said government should appreciate the move highlighting poor security at assembly. One of the protesters shouted that government lets money launder Ayyan Ali go scot-free and arrest a man who performs social responsibility as a journalist.
FIRs lodged against the anchorperson
Aram Bagh police have lodged two separate FIRs against Iqrarul Hassan with chief security officer of the Sindh Assembly and the station house officer (SHO) Aram Bagh as complainants.
The FIRs included various sections of the Pakistan Penal Code involving the possession of illegal arms, fraud and others. A large number of people have been sitting outside the police station to express solidarity with Iqrar since he was arrested on Friday afternoon.
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