LAHORE: To promote tourism and provide security/ guidance to foreigners, Punjab Police is all set to form a Punjab Tourist Force (PTF).
Punjab IG Captain (Retd) Arif Nawaz has sent a summary from the Central Police Office to Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar for the approval of the Tourist Force.
Punjab Welfare DIG Shariq Kamal told The Express Tribune that it has been decided to form a separate force to promote tourism and protect foreign tourists visiting the province.
After the chief minister’s approval, the force will begin operations in Murree as part of the first phase.
In the initial phase, 80 personnel will be recruited from the police force, including inspectors. The force will be named Punjab Tourist Force.
The personnel enrolled in this force will be provided two months of training in which complete information about tourist spots will be shared. Moreover, the officials will be taught communication skills and a good command over Urdu and English will be a must.
Personnel would act as guides and be trained to provide tourists with historical background about the recreational and tourist spots. The tourist force will be given small jeeps and motorcycles for patrolling, said Kamal.
This ‘Tourist Force’ will be working under the supervision of CCPO Rawalpindi and SDPO Murree. Punjab Police Add IG Police Inam Ghani confirmed that after the government’s decision to promote tourism, a separate force will also be formed in Punjab, following the pattern of other countries. After Murree, the project will be extended to Lahore and other areas, including Nankana Sahib, he added.
“Efforts will be made to operationalise this force before the opening of Kartakpur Corridor,” said Ghani. The Tourists Force will be deployed at resorts, the Walled City, historical sites like Nankana Sahib, Hassan Abdal and Kartarpur Corridor. The police will also provide security to tourists.
With numbers increasing, the force will also provide them with information on the food and culture of the province, especially around tourist destinations. Part of their job involves guiding tourists at local markets and eateries.
Talking about the uniform of the force, Ghani said it would be slightly different and changes will be made according to weather conditions. The PTF Helpline will be 1787.