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Tariq Fatemi removed from post by PM following inquiry into Dawn story

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The Prime Minister’s Office on Saturday issued directives to remove Syed Tariq Fatemi, special assistant to the prime minister on foreign affairs, from his post for his alleged role in ‘Dawn leaks’, saying that a notification in this regard will be issued shortly.

The directive came after an inquiry committee probing a story published by Dawn on October 6, 2016 submitted its findings in a report to PM Nawaz Sharif. The report — the contents of which have so far not been made public — also contains the committee’s recommendations on the matter.

Notably, Saturday’s statement from the PM’s Office did not mention why action was ordered against Fatemi.

Additionally, the missive from the PM’s Office read that action should be taken against Rao Tehsin Ali, the principal information officer of the Ministry of Information “under the E&D Rules 1973” on charges levelled against him in the committee’s report.

The PM’s Office also said it recommended referring Dawn to the All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) for “necessary disciplinary action”, but did not say what the charges against Editor Dawn or journalist Cyril Almeida — who wrote the story — are.

The APNS has additionally been asked to develop a Code of Conduct for print media, especially when it comes to stories that deal with “issues of national importance and security”.

The language of the statement suggests that these four recommendations are in addition to the committee’s recommendations in paragraph 18 of the inquiry report, which has yet to be made public.

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