HAROON JANJUA

ISLAMABAD - After Senate Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani’s remarks, police yesterday registered a case against Jamiat Ulema-e-Isam-Fazl (JUI-F) lawmaker Senator Hafiz Hamdullah for misbehaving with right activist Marvi Sarmed in a TV talks show. The FIR was registered in the Kohsar Police Station, Islamabad yesterday.

Earlier Chairman Senate Raza Rabbani on last Monday clarified that his permission was not needed to initiate investigations against Senator Hamdullah.

Marvi Sirmed on Tuesday wrote on his Twitter, “I've been informed by Islamabad Police that FIR has been registered against Sen Hamdullah on my application under sections 506 and 394.

Speaking to The Nation, Rukhsar Mehdi, SHO Kohsar Police Station said that police registered FIR against the JUI-F Senator on the orders of Inspector General of Islamabad Police Tariq Masood Yasin under section 506 and 354 of the Pakistan Penal Code, (PPC), charges relating to abuse and harassment.” “We have received the written statement from the chairman and will begin the investigation as per rules,” he added.

Marvi wrote in another Tweet: “Would have been much better if the relevant Section 354-A would have been invited, which is more stringent and is non-bailable.” 354-A according to PPC relating to sexual harassment, including physical contact and advances involving unwelcome and explicit sexual overtures or a demand or request for sexual favours.

Chairman Senate Raza Rabbani during a senate session confirmed that he had received a letter from Kohsar Police Station seeking permission to initiate investigation against JUI-F senator and after his stance on the issue the police registered FIR.

Rules were clear when saying that the Senate chairman should be informed about investigations against a senator for his involvement in an offence, the chairman clarified. However, he said, the rules only require intimation and not permission for starting investigations.

The disturbing incident caused outrage on social media and various politicians, rights activists and rights organisations condemned the aggressive action of the senator towards Marvi Sirmed. Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari had strongly condemned the insulting and immoral behavior of Hamdullah towards prominent rights activist and political commentator. The PPP chairman announced that his party will take up the issue in the parliament and on other forums.