Controversy: Cholistan Hunting Trip Raises Questions

It is believed that the DC along with Hamdani and the group violated the ban after hunting 14 deer and escaped in Cholistan.

Rahim Yar Khan’s Deputy Commissioner (DC) recently went on a trip to Cholistan, and allegedly hunted along with an influential businessman and 24 guests. The controversy rises as it is believed that the group violated the ban after hunting 14 deer and escaped.

District wildlife officer (DLO) Asim Kamran had been the one to raise the topic, as he stated in a video message online that DC Ali Shahzad had requested him that he wanted to have dinner after desert safari with guests on Saturday night. Kamran allowed on the condition that he could not be allowed to involve in any hunting activity in Cholistan.

DC also contacted Assistant Director Wildlife Bahawalpur Ali Usman Bukhari about the dinner. Kamran said that on Saturday night, influential businessman Ahmed Shah Hamdani with some guests reached the wildlife check post near Sorhian by official vehicles and said the DC and other guests would arrive after some time. Hamdani was quoted saying that they were going for a dinner at Ahmed Jan’s residence at Dabbianwala in Cholistan. Later on, the DC with some guests also arrived at Cholistan with two vehicles of his squad.

However, after a couple of hours, the DLO received the news that the DC and Hamdani’s vehicles had changed their track and were going towards the Kharbara area near Tokenwala wildlife check post. This is the main habitat of Chinkara deer. Then wildlife staff chased the DC’s party at 11.35 pm before they hunted almost 12 to 14 deer. Zahid Farooq Ranjha, the warden, stopped them near Sorhian check post.

Later, DLO Kamran chased the illegal hunters on his official vehicle and DC’s black vehicle hit his vehicle from the rear side. He called the police and informed the officials about the matter. He said he would frame charges against the illegal hunters.

It has also been reported that Hamdani had invited Shahzad and the others because of the auction for a prime location for a petrol pump at DC Office Chowk, which was to be held on Monday 16th (today). PTI leader Rana Raheel also claimed that Hamdani wanted to influence the auctions by taking the DC to Cholistan with him.

How did DC Shahzad respond to controversial hunting allegations in Cholistan?

Image result for dc ali shehzad
DC Ali Shahzad

DC Ali Shahzad said, through a press release of the Deputy Director Public Relations, that he went to Cholistan for routine visit to ensure measures to remove locusts. He said he informed the departments concerned about his visit well in time and he took dinner of all officers with him.

Furthermore, he denied illegally hunting in Cholistan and claimed that when a vehicle stopped the luggage vehicle of DC squad at Sunny Bridge, the driver thought a gang of robbers had stopped him. He claimed that if he had entered Cholistan illegally, then the Rangers and/or the police would have stopped him.


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