Street crimes, attacks on police major challenges for new CCPO

By Bureau report
June 08, 2023

PESHAWAR: Apart from routine tasks, the two major challenges for the new administration of the capital city police is to go after gangs of street criminals and bring an end to the attacks on the force. The law and order in the capital city of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is important as it affects the overall security situation in the province and even other parts of the country.The city has seen some of the worst years when bomb attacks, rocket barrages and target killing of police had become a routine. The situation then improved after 2014. However, things started worsening again since the mid-2021 when attacks on police, calls for extortion and target killings recorded an upward trend.


Apart from several attacks on police, an unprecedented increase was witnessed in the incidents of street crimes in the last few months, triggering concerns among the public as well as government and its departments. Some improvement in the situation was witnessed last month but still street crime is one of the major challenges to the Peshawar police under the new Capital City Police Officer Ashfaq Anwar.The new CCPO was tasked to improve the law and order in Peshawar after he led the Bannu Range well at a time when it was witnessing terrorist incidents almost daily. Bringing an ending to attacks on police stations, posts and tackling street crime is going to be the toughest task for the new CCPO who enjoys good reputation for being honest and competent.

The police have claimed to held hundreds of criminals involved in street crimes during the current year. Many are still operating, looting people and even posing threat to lives of public. Scores of people were shot by the violent street criminals in Peshawar in the past months. The other day a young boy was shot and injured in the leg by robbers in Garhi Qamardin on Ring Road near the Government Primary School. Peshawar and many other districts in KP have witnessed an increase in the incidents of attacks on police, calls for extortion and targeted attacks for over two years now. Hand-grenades were hurled and heavy weapons were used in attacks on the police stations, police posts and patrolling cars in Peshawar and many other districts in the past months.

The force witnessed the worst attack when a suicide bomber blew himself up in the mosque of the police headquarters of Peshawar in January, martyring 86 policemen and injuring over 200 others. The Sarband Police Station was attacked early Wednesday. The alert cops retaliated bravely. This was hours after a militant was killed during an encounter in nearby Matani. The area is not far from the place where wall-chalking in favour of banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan was witnessed a few days back. Discouraging the corrupt elements within the force and posting of competent and honest officers as sub-divisional police officers and station house officers purely on merit will help the new police chief overcome the rising incidents of crime. The new administration has made several changes since assuming the charge in an effort to improve things. More honest and competent officers are needed to be posted as SPs, DSPs and SHOs to improve law and order.

Posting of the right men for the right job will help the CCPO in actions against the mafias involved in sale of ice and other drugs, land-grabbing, extortion, usury and display of arms to spread terror. These mafias have strengthened over the last few years for not laying a proper hand on them. The biggest mafias are those involved in drugs, especially ice business, and land grabbing. Many groups can be seen brandishing weapons in public to spread terror and later use it to grab properties.

Instead of looking at the official figures, which are usually incorrect, Ashfaq Anwar needs to get first-hand information of the real situation in all the urban, suburban and rural towns. There have been complaints for years that most of the incidents of snatching, robberies, lifting, kidnapping are not being reported by the police to show seniors that everything is fine in their area of jurisdiction. On the other hand, unnecessary FIRs are being registered to show the good work of the force, placing a burden on the courts and prisons. Registration of FIRs in crimes that affect the common man is the right of the public that will discourage the gangs operating in an area due to fear of police action.