ISLAMABAD , Oct 2 (TNS): Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal on Monday lashed out at Rangers for blocking his entry in the Accountability Court threatening that he would rather resign than be a ‘puppet minister’.
Addressing the media after being disallowed by the Rangers to enter the court complex where former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s hearing was under way, Iqbal said the Islamabad chief commissioner was coordinating the security arrangements for today’s hearing.
“This morning, however, the situation had changed and the Rangers had taken over security of the judicial complex,” said Iqbal, explaining that in Islamabad the Rangers operate on the directions of the chief commissioner.
The minister said that the Rangers claimed to have “their own orders”, adding that this is a deplorable state of affairs which demands being taken notice of.
“Rangers are subordinate to my ministry, they’re supposed to work under the command of the civil administration. If Rangers have refused to observe orders, a high-level inquiry will be held and we will see who has challenged the writ of the government,” said a visibly upset Iqbal.
“Disciplinary action will be taken against those who took this action. There would be one law, one government as there cannot be two states with a state” the interior Minister who was highly angered over his insult before the full eyes of the media and the people.
“I waited for the Rangers commander for 15 minutes, this is unacceptable, whosoever has done this, disciplinary action will be taken against him. I will resign as I will not be a puppet minister. A force that is subordinate to me has to follow my orders” said. Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal after stopped at the gate of the judicial complex.
Earlier, Iqbal explained that it is the right of Nawaz’s supporters, legal aides and media to attend the hearing as “closed trials are a hallmark of martial laws”. He said the commissioner had made special arrangements for those who wanted to attend the hearing as space is limited.
Iqbal also admonished an assistant commissioner for the state of affairs, asking the official to give him what has occurred today in writing so Iqbal could “sort them out”. The minister said this is not a banana republic, it is a constitutional republic.
Once Iqbal had left the premises, the Rangers’ Brigadier stepped out of the complex to inquire into the situation and spoke to Federal Minister Daniyal Aziz. However, soon a number of media personnel and lawyers surrounded them and began chanting “shame, shame”, after which the officer went back to the court complex.
When the hearing of corruption cases began earlier today, the security personnel did not allow any media persons of PML-N supporters to enter the premises.