KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Thursday declared a Sindh government’s notification surrendering the services of the inspector general of police to the Centre and appointing Abdul Majeed Dasti as acting police chief as illegal, ruling that AD Khawaja will continue to serve as IGP till the completion of his term. The court in its judgment also restored IGP Khawaja’s powers of transfers and postings within the police department. The Sindh government had in June withdrawn IGP’s powers to decide the transfers and postings of senior police officials in the province. The court also declared all postings and transfers carried out in the province after July 7 as illegal.The bench observed that the complete command of the provincial police remains with the IGP and that anyone found taking orders from elsewhere may be proceeded against by the police chief. The court directed the federal government to draft rules regarding the tenure and appointment of the IGP.The court called for an end to “outside interference, whether by the provincial government or anybody or authority thereof or otherwise (including any minister of any rank) in police affairs.” The court held that any attempt to sideline or marginalise the IGP or circumvent him or curtail his powers would be contrary to the law.The court declared that the Sindh (Repeal of the Police Order, 2002 and Revival of the Police Act, 1861) Act, 2011 is intra vires of the constitution, and that therefore the Police Act, 1861, as revived and restored by the said act is the law in force in the province and not the Police Order, 2002. Concluding its judgment, the court observed that police reforms are an ongoing exercise and may be touched upon later in other petitions. Published in Daily Times, September 8th 2017.