Rao Tehsin Ali is writing a book to unveil faces involved in Dawn Leaks saga


ISLAMABAD Sept 20 (TNS):  The suspended former principal information officer (PIO) Rao Tehsin Ali, a Grad-21 officer,  is writing a book these days to reveal the names of persons involved in the Dawn Leaks, the sources told.

The sources further added that the publicity rights of the book have been given to an American publishing company and an agreement to this effect has already been signed.

The PIO heads the press information department, which is the principal department of the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage.

Blaming the problem on an honest and hard-working bureaucrat and making him a scapegoat is what most of the analysts call the arrogant culture of the corrupt elements in power corridors including a willingness to sack people when things go wrong victimized Rao Tehsin Ali.

They should have shouldered all the blame for the Dawn Leaks as they did play a part in selecting the target.

The government officers are generally put on leave who are found compromising national security and are placed on “administrative leave. They sit home and do nothing while they continue to collect their paychecks. That’s some “punishment” to some favorite ones but in case of Rao it was not done. We have so much unemployment in this country yet try firing a government official for anything short of a wrongdoing amounts to a crime.

Earlier an adviser was fired and ordered ‘action’ against a senior bureaucrat after controversial news story leak.

Adviser Tariq Fatemi also fell prey to this conspiracy.

Pakistan’s military rejected Prime Minister Office’s decision to fire a top foreign policy adviser over his alleged connections to an article published last year that suggested there was a rift between civilian and military leaders on how to tackle militancy.

Rao challenged his suspension and orders of disciplinary proceedings against him in the Islamabad High Court.

In his petition Ali said he has been wrongly blamed for the Dawn Leaks saga. I was dismissed from my post and asked to report to the Establishment Division, the petition stated.

Action was taken against me without showing me the inquiry report of the commission. It’s my right to acquire the commission’s report, pleaded Ali.

The ministries of interior and information, along with the prime minister’s principal secretary were made respondents in the petition. He pleaded the court to order the relevant authorities to be provided the report.

The Dawn Leaks inquiry commission recommendations said Ali “would be proceeded against under the Efficiency & Discipline Rules 1973 on the charges based on the report findings”.

Prime Minister Office on April 29 approved the recommendations of the committee, which ordered proceedings against Ali and withdrew the portfolio of foreign affairs adviser from prime minister’s special assistant Tariq Fatemi.

“The Prime Minister Offfice, having considered the findings of the Committee as to its terms of reference, is pleased to approve its recommendations in para 18 of the report,” read an order released by the PM Office.

Ali told that he was awaiting the inquiry commission report and that his lawyer has asked for the classified copy of the report. “How could the commission recommend action against me without identifying those responsible for Dawn Leaks,” he asked.

The order released by the PM Office also said that the role of the editor of Dawn Newspaper, Zaffar Abbas, and reporter Cyril Almeida, will be referred to the All Pakistan Newspaper Association (APNS) for necessary disciplinary action to be taken against them.

It added that the APNS will be asked to develop a code of conduct for the media, “especially when dealing with issues relating to security of Pakistan and to ensure that stories on issues of national importance and security are published by abiding to basic journalistic and editorial norms”.

Later, the Establishment Division issued a notification, making Ali an officer on special duty and asking him to report to the division immediately.

The story in the Dawn newspaper stirred a major controversy last year, resulting in Almeida coming under fire from the military and government and being temporarily placed on the Exit Control List. The inquiry committee which investigated the matter comprised one member each from the Inter Services Intelligence, Military Intelligence and Intelligence Bureau, Establishment Secretary Tahir Shahbaz, Punjab Ombudsman Najam Saeed, and an FIA director.

The committee was headed by Justice (retd) Amir Raza Khan.

Later, the Pakistan Army’s top commanders expressed serious concern over the “feeding of a false and fabricated story of an important security meeting”, terming it a breach of national security.

The government called it a ‘fabricated’ story and termed the “purported deliberations” during the security meeting as speculative, misleading, factually incorrect, and an “amalgamation of fiction and fabrication”.

Following a preliminary investigation, the government relieved Senator Pervaiz Rasheed of his responsibilities as federal minister pending a high-level inquiry.