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Retired judge to head leak probe: Nisar


ISLAMABAD: A retired high court judge will head the committee meant to establish the identity of the person who provided information regarding a high-level meeting of top civilian and military officials, held last month.

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan told a group of reporters on Saturday that the names of proposed members of the inquiry committee had been sent to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the committee would be formed early next week, private TV channels reported.

The minister said that the committee would work in a free and transparent manner, adding that the probe would not target former information minister Pervaiz Rashid, but would seek to track down the person who leaked “false information about a sensitive issue”. The prime minister also wanted to establish the identity of that person, Chaudhry Nisar said.

An interior ministry spokesperson confirmed the remarks made by the interior minister during his brief chat with a group of reporters.

The disclosure comes after the interior minister met Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif twice in less than 24 hours.

Chaudhry Nisar, CM Sharif and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had met Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif on Oct 27 — days before the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s planned lockdown of Islamabad. Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Director General Lt Gen Rizwan Akhtar was also present during the meeting.

The delegation briefed the COAS on the progress of the investigation and conveyed their recommendations over the action being taken on the story, which has been termed a “national security breach” by both the government and the military.

Two days after the meeting, Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid was asked to step down. According to a statement from the PM’s Office, the prime minister had directed Mr Rashid to step down to enable the holding of an independent and detailed inquiry into the episode.

The statement also noted that the inquiry committee would include senior officers of the ISI, Military Intelligence and Intelligence Bureau.

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