Short staffed: Home dept recalls police protective detail from private citizens

Pakistan on 11 February 2014
Location : Peshawar | Source : Express Tribune. Image Source: Express Tribune

The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) government has directed the provincial police department to immediately withdraw personnel assigned to provide security to unauthorised persons. This was stated in a notification issued on Sunday by the Home and Tribal Affairs department.

Following a decision taken by the provincial cabinet on October 17, 2013, the police department was asked to withdraw police personnel from guard duty with private individuals. A directive to this effect were conveyed to the police on October 25. However, implementation on these orders did not follow.

According to Sunday’s notification, which was issued from the office of the Home and Tribal Affairs Secretary Syed Akhtar Ali Shah, the home department has constituted committees to assess the level of threat to private individuals who need police guards for security. These committees are constituted on the district, divisional and provincial levels.

Committee members include the special home secretary, deputy IGP headquarters, Peshawar commissioner, deputy commissioners, DPOs, regional police officers, and members of the police special branch and the federal intelligence agencies.

Official sources told The Express Tribune more than 5,000 police personnel have been deputed to provide private security. These include doctors, lawyers and people from various professions who have been threatened by anti-state elements.

“We have constituted these committees to assess the threat level to those being guarded by regular police as we are facing a shortage of staff in various districts of K-P,” shared the official while requesting anonymity.

The orders issued by the provincial cabinet had been conveyed to the police department but were not implemented, he reiterated, adding the K-P police chief has taken up the issue with the chief secretary as well.

Following incidents of doctors and others being kidnapped for ransom, police protection was provided to those who felt at risk and had demanded the government provide police guards for safety.

Meanwhile, a complete ban remained imposed on motorcycle riding in the provincial capital following directions issued by the home department on Sunday.

The direction were issued for one day, during Sehat ka Insaf’s health programme in which more than 0.4 million children were inoculated against nine paediatric diseases in Peshawar district. Health workers were accompanied by volunteers of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and were provided security by police.

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