ISLAMABAD - Top boss of capital police Tuesday showed his inability to trace and nab those extortionists who were demanding extortion money in the area of Islamabad while using mobile phone SIMs of neighbouring country, Afghanistan.

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Islamabad Sikandar Hayat submitted before the Senate Standing Committee on Interior that ICT (Islamabad Capital Territory) Police was unable to trace those extortionists who were using phone SIMs of Afghanistan either by using the international roaming services of local operators or from the neighbouring country.

The confession of IGP stunned the committee what a committee member and Federal Minister for Information Pervez Rasheed remarked that this showed the state had failed to provide protection to its citizens.  The IGP disclosed this while giving details of a case, referred to police through PML-N Senator Begum Najma Hameed, in which some unknown people were demanding Rs 30 million extortion money from a local businessman of twin cities while using the cell phone numbers of Afghanistan. Begum Hammed informed the committee that the family had settled in Dubai because of the death threats from extortionists and now they had decided to pay the extortion, as the police were unable to trace the culprits. She censured the IGP that he even did not bother to share the details of progress in the case, if any, despite passage of 10 days.

“The IGP, at least, should have informed me about the progress of the case,” she said, adding that if the police were treating the lawmakers in such a manner, what kind of bad treatment would be meted out with common citizens.

However, Sikandar Hayat was not looking serious to listen to the woman lawmaker of the incumbent government and shortly said that the data of those mobile phone companies not operating in Pakistan could only be accessed or obtained from that country from where it was being operated.

On an explanation sought by committee Chairman Senator Talha Mahmood, Hayat said that a senior police office had been deputed to investigate the case, however, there was no progress in the case. “As there is no progress in the case, I have nothing to share with the legislators,” he added. “We, however, can provide security to the family on their return from Dubai,” the IGP explained.

Senator Talha Mahmood suggested to the IGP that local phone companies, whom roaming services were being used by these mobile phone numbers, could be pressed to seek data from Afghanistan-based companies.