Two low ranking official booked on PM order ISLAMABAD: On the orders of no less than the prime minister, police have registered a case against two low-ranking officials of the Lahore Electric Supply Company (Lesco) for their negligence which led to the death of two persons.
“On the directives of the prime minister, an inquiry was conducted to identify officials responsible for gross negligence, which had caused the death of two innocent persons,” said a statement released by the media wing of the prime minister’s office on Thursday.
It said, “Mohammad Azeem and Ms Kanwal died because of the falling down of a live transmission line in the Kot Lakhpat area on Anum Road in Lahore on July 22. Another person was injured when meters installed on a pole caught fire.”
According to the statement, the inquiry report submitted to the prime minister identified officials whose carelessness had caused the loss of precious human lives. “A disciplinary action along with registration of an FIR against Lesco’s Feeder In-charge Mirza Tariq Baig and Assistant Manager (operations) Samin Gohar was recommended by the inquiry report,” it said.
Besides, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also ordered suspension of Lesco’s Deputy Manager (operations) Aqeel Zafar Sulehri with initiation of disciplinary proceedings against him as advised in the inquiry report.
However, this episode raises the question why has the prime minister interfered in the matter when there is a full-fledged ministry of water and power manned by two ministers and a plethora of advisers. Moreover, the incident took place in Lahore where Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is known to take quick action in such cases.
“Since electricity distribution is a federal subject, what is surprising if the prime minister has taken action on learning about the tragic death of two people covered live by TV channels,” said an official of the ministry.
Similarly, an official of the prime minister’s office argued that since Mr Sharif himself had watched the electrocution of the hapless individuals on TV, he promptly ordered an inquiry and took it to logical conclusion.
But, for Dr Arif Alvi of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, it displayed ‘mis-governance’. “It’s good that the prime minister took notice of the killing of two persons, but where is the institutional response.”
It meant that if the media had not covered the incident, the death of the duo would have gone unnoticed, the legislator argued.
Unfortunately, he said, the PML-N leadership liked publicity and was known for promptly taking action on media reports.
Nowhere in the world, would the chief executive of a country get involved in such issues, rather he would pay attention to the strengthening of institutions, he said.