Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police use modern technology

Pakistan on 16 May 2014
Location : Khyber Pakhtunkhwa | Source : Central Asia Online. Image Source: Flickr User Daniel X O'Neil

Technology is improving the performance of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Police, officials say.

Closed-circuit TV (CCTV) cameras, jammers, explosive detectors and scanners are allowing them to better investigate and operate against terror networks and criminals.

Gulbahar, Faqirabad and University Town police stations, which greatly use the technology, have been declared model stations.

"More police stations in the province will be converted into model police stations by providing them modern technology to help police maintain law and order," KP Chief Minister Pervez Khattak said in April.

Benefits of CCTV cameras
CCTV cameras, which workers installed in the crowded public places of Peshawar as well as at the entry and exit points of Hayatabad township, have greatly helped police.

The cameras are connected to the internet so that officials can monitor their images via phone and computer.

The KP government and police force have asked the general public, especially traders, to install CCTV cameras to keep a check on suspicious activity.

Fortunately, many have already done so.

Privately owned cameras helped police arrest miscreants responsible for a recent bank robbery on Charsadda Road. The bank's managers turned video footage of the attack over to police, which helped police locate and arrest the group's members the next day, Peshawar Senior Superintendent of Police Operations Najib-ur-Rahman said.

Countering bombings
The Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) has seen success from the explosive detectors and scanners it has acquired the past few years, but it is making improvements to prevent further bombings.

Cars for senior officials contain jammers to block remote-controlled bombs from exploding. Workers will install the jammers in patrol cars throughout KP, officials said.

Geo-tagging will also help police solve bombings, KP Police Chief Nasir Khan Durrani said.

Geo-tagging will help investigators as they go to a bombing scene to help identify the problems as well as the nature of attacks in any specific area, he added.

Help from mobile phones
Mobile phones are proving useful to police.

All station house officers (SHOs) now have software on their cellular phones to check for unregistered and stolen vehicles.

"An officer just needs to enter the registration number of a car and the city to find if it is stolen or unregistered," Nowshera Deputy Superintendent of Police Waqar Ahmad said.

Cell phones have helped officers detect a number of stolen and unregistered vehicles, Durrani said.

The KP Police also have asked the provincial government to allow the force to purchase at least three GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) locators that will help the force identify the name, address and location of a terrorist, extortionist or kidnapper when he makes a call.

Presently, the KP Police depend on other institutions to supply the call data and records of a phone used in a terrorist incident or crime.

Police have busted many gangs involved in terrorism, extortion or kidnapping by tracing their cell phones.

Investment pays off
KP Home and Tribal Affairs Secretary Syed Akhtar Ali Shah said the investment (part of a 2 billion Rs., or US $20.2m, allocation for infrastructure development) has been worth it.

Besides the acquisition of technology, police have also been receiving training from international specialists in criminology, forensics and other police matters, he said.

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