IGP surprise visits aim to boost basic policing

Aug 24, 2019
LAHORE: Punjab IGP Captain (retd) Arif Nawaz has vowed to intensify surprise visits to police stations throughout the province as part of his charge to eliminate “thana-culture”.

Recently, he visited two police stations in Lahore and one in Sheikhupura district. Nawaz was annoyed over the poor working environment in Badami Bagh police station and suspended the SHO while also giving the DSP a dressing down. The history sheet of proclaimed offenders (POs) and other documentation was also incomplete at the mentioned police station. During the visit, Nawaz randomly summoned a constable and asked the SHO if he knew his subordinate’s name. Astonishingly, the SHO was unable to answer despite the constable having been posted under him for three months.

When the IGP asked locals about their issues, they piled on the complaints. The sorry state of police stations left the police chief frustrated. Nawaz pointed out that he had taken charge four months ago and was taking various measures. However, he found it unfortunate that the basic policing unit, the station, was being ignored.

“During my surprise visits, I found out the overall performance of personnel at police stations is not satisfactory. “We need to make a lot of improvements,” he said. “Our image cannot be built if we do not focus on performance,” he continued.

Nawaz said he noted certain issues and planned to highlight them at the next RPO conference. He also vowed to issue orders to DPOs, RPOs and other field officers to ensure such surprise visits. He also ruled out the effectiveness of formal inspection, saying during such inspections the staff knew a senior officer was going to visit so they become alert and organised.