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Maryam Nawaz’s Choice to Wear Police Uniform Sparks Debate.

Critics raise legality concerns as police defend Punjab CM's move as 'morale-boosting'

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The decision of Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz to wear a police uniform during a ceremony for lady constables has ignited a mix of reactions online, raising questions about its legality and intention. While the government defends it as a morale-boosting gesture, critics argue it’s more about optics than substance.

The move, seen as an attempt to bolster the police’s morale, drew criticism from some quarters, with concerns raised over the appropriateness of a civilian donning police attire. This move, viewed unfavorably by many on social media, has stirred controversy and divided opinions.

However, the police have rushed to defend their chief, citing a purported notification issued on January 30th. This notification allegedly relaxes regulations to allow the governor and chief minister to wear the police uniform on specific occasions to uplift police spirits. Yet, the authenticity and timing of this notification remain contentious, with some viewing it as a convenient cover-up.

Critics suggest that the notification, issued by a subordinate officer, may have been fabricated to justify the controversial act and deflect criticism. The lack of transparency surrounding the notification raises further doubts about its legitimacy.

In response, a former senior cabinet member of the caretaker government expressed skepticism about the existence of such a notification during their tenure. He questioned the necessity of such a measure and criticized the government’s fixation on optics over substance.

Meanwhile, the Inspector General (IG) of Punjab defended the practice, stating that it’s not uncommon for senior government officials to wear uniforms for ceremonial purposes. However, concerns persist about the implications of blurring the lines between civilian and law enforcement roles.

The controversy escalated when a lawyer filed a petition against Maryam Nawaz in the Lahore High Court, alleging unauthorized use of the police uniform. This legal action underscores the seriousness of the debate surrounding the incident.

Former caretaker CM Punjab Hasan Askari criticized Maryam’s actions, emphasizing the need for dignity and decorum in public office. He warned against trivializing the chief minister’s position by engaging in such stunts, highlighting the importance of upholding institutional integrity.

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