LAHORE: Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif did not pass the “disengagement” order as he claimed before the judicial commission formed to launch an inquiry into the 2014 Model Town incident, the report made public by Punjab government says.
The report also maintains that the operation planned and designed under the then Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah “could have easily been avoided” and that the “police officers actively participated in the massacre”.
Here are some important conclusions listed in the inquiry report
CM Punjab did not pass the disengagement order
“This tribunal has very carefully seen the CD of the first press conference of Chief Minister Punjab after the incident in which he did not specifically mention about his direction of disengagement. It has become crystal clear that order of disengagement was not passed at all, rather position taken by CM Punjab appears to be an afterthought defence not taken before the nation in the press conference,” says the report.
The commission maintained that it arrived at the conclusion after “putting all facts and circumstances in juxtapositions”.
‘Police officers actively participated in the massacre’
The commission, citing a golden principle for assesssment of evidence that man can tell a lie but circumstances don’t, says that the facts and circumstances of the “bloodbath” clearly show that the “police officers actively participated in the massacre”.
“The actions of police of firing and severely beating the people on the crime scene is irrefutably suggestive that the police did exactly for which they were sent and gathered over there. The police and all other concerned, without any exception, abetted being desperado, performed daredevil acts which resulted into irreparable loss,” says the report.
The commission concludes the keeping in view the circumstances, the reader of this report can easily fix the responsibility of the unfortunate Minhaj-ul-Quran incident.
‘All Were In Unison in Withholding Information’
The report says that the police’s act of firing over PAT workers who were just pelting stones on police.
“The police as retaliatory measure, resorted to firing towards the protesters leaving many persons injured at the site of the incident some of whom succumbed to their injuries. Admittedly, such a level of offensive police by any stretch of imagination did not commensurate with the level of resistance by unarmed PAT workers,” says the report.
It maintains that the level of co-operation in digging out the truth is that no police official from top to bottom, whether actively participated in the operation or not, did utter a single word about the person under whose command the police resorted to firing upon the PAT workers.
“Understandably, all were in unison in withholding the information from this Tribunal,” the report concludes.
‘Operation could have easily been avoided’
The tribunal also observed that during the high level huddle on June 16, 2014 (erroneously written 2017), then Law Minister Rana Sanaullah had a strong point of view to stop Dr. Qadri from achieving his objective.
As Commissioner Lahore about encroachments around Idara Minhaj-ul-Quran, the chair decided to remove them with immediate effect.
The tribunal adds that it came on the surface that the participants of the huddle wre in knowledge of the orders passed by Lahore High Court in 2011 and no legal opinion Advocate General Punjab was sought prior to the decision to start the operation.
“Such facts and circumstances under which the meeting was held led to the most unforunate incident in the history of Pakistan,” the tribunal observed.
About the barriers and the court’s 2011 order, it says that the security barriers were installed to dissatisfaction of both the inhabitants of the locality and the police which continued uninterruptedly without any complaint from any quarter for more than three years but suddenly it was altogether ignored without contemplating the disastrous consequences.
“The operation planned and designed under the chairmanship of then Law Minister (Rana Sanaullah) which resulted into gruesome killings could have easily been avoided,” the tribunal concludes.