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Friday July 19, 2024

Police, Rangers devise joint action plan for poll security

By Salis bin Perwaiz
January 12, 2023

Sindh police chief Ghulam Nabi Memon reviewed at a meeting on Wednesday the overall security situation and measures adopted by his force for the second phase of the local government elections scheduled to be held in Karachi and Hyderabad divisions on January 15.

At the meeting, chaired by Memon at his office, he was briefed on the security measures for the polls, including the available strength and required manpower, the deployment of cops in Karachi and Hyderabad, and mugging incidents.

Officials said the additional inspector general of the Courter Terrorism Department also briefed the IGP on security threats and measures adopted by his unit to overcome any untoward situation. He said arrangements were under way for publishing a book of blacklisted criminals and CTD action against such criminals in the Karachi range.

IGP Memon issued directives to Karachi police chief Jawed Alam Odho to provide foolproof security during the LG polls and issue special directions to his subordinates. He directed that the union councils and polling stations in all the districts of the two divisions should be rearranged into highly sensitive, sensitive and normal classifications on the basis of the regular crime analysis, and an extraordinary security plan should be prepared.

Further necessary steps should be taken as soon as possible to ensure the safety of life and property of the citizens at all levels during the polls, he said, ordering permanent liaison between the Sindh Rangers and other law enforcement agencies and their involvement in the consultation process.

He said the security plan prepared for the elections should be made workable for all other phases in a systematic and coordinated manner so that they could be made more stringent and foolproof.

IGP Memon further said that during the LG elections, all measures should be ensured for the observance of and respect for the code of conduct laid down by the Election Commission of Pakistan for the candidates and the voters. He said that in the implementation of the code of conduct, the police should not be allowed to act with any leniency or partiality.

Memon was informed that there would a deployment of more than 37,000 policemen during the LG elections and there were about 5,000 polling stations in Karachi alone. Moreover, there are about 1,300 most sensitive and over 3,600 sensitive polling stations in the city. At each of the highly sensitive polling stations, eight personnel will be deployed, and four will be stationed at each sensitive polling station. Moreover, an extra force will also be provided to the Karachi and Hyderabad police for security duties.

Separately, Sindh Rangers Director General Major General Azhar Waqas presided over a meeting, held at the Rangers headquarters. The meeting was attended by the commissioners Karachi and Hyderabad divisions, Karachi’s additional IG, the additional IG of the Special Branch, the CTD DIG, the joint DG of the IB, the DIGs of the Special Branch, East, West, South districts of Karachi, Hyderabad division and traffic, and senior officials of sensitive agencies.

The meeting reviewed the law and order situation in the province, including measures for snap checking, search operations, and flag marches, for the LG elections. It was emphasized in the meeting that in light of the orders given by the provincial government and the election commission for action, full adherence to the prevailing laws and code of conduct would be ensured as much as possible and strict disciplinary action should be taken against elements violating it in order to make security foolproof and to deal with any kind of security concerns.

A joint action plan was approved by the Rangers, police and other law enforcement agencies to deal with any emergency situation during the elections. Moreover, the paramilitary force will perform duty as a quick response force to assist the police, the Rangers spokesman said.

Earlier, the Election Commission in Sindh had written a letter to the secretary of the ministry of interior, Islamabad, in which it had requested static deployment of Pakistan Army and Rangers troops outside the highly sensitive polling stations.