Inspector General of Punjab Police Muhammad Habibur Rehman on Wednesday constituted a four member committee to propose changes to police uniforms.
The committee consists of AddIGs Qalbe Abbas, Aslam Tareen and Malik Khuda Bakhsh Awan. The IGP will review the recommendations of the committee on Saturday.
The decision to change police uniforms was announced by the IGP during a visit to Rahim Yar Khan. He said the black colour of the uniform appeared to be responsible for the short-tempered behaviour of policemen. “Punjab has a hot climate. Black shirts absorb extra heat in summer months and make policemen cranky and ill-tempered,” he said.
Responding to questions about the deteriorating law and order situation, the IGP said the number of police personnel needed to be increased. He said the department was understaffed at its current strength of 180,000 officials. Rehman said this was insufficient to maintain law and order in the most populace province of the country.
The IGP said the department had been directed to ensure action in crimes against women. He said he would personally follow the investigations of crimes such as acid attacks, wani, wata satta, ‘honour’ killing and karo kari. “All police stations have been ordered to ensure that none of these offences go unreported,” he said.
He said there were no no-go areas or private torture cells in the province any longer, adding that the department was undergoing major reforms. He said these measures were meant to improve interaction between police officials and the public. He said the police’s job would be expanded from just controlling crime to establishing an environment that discouraged such behaviour and practices.
He said the police would not be allowed to be used by anyone to settle their personal scores.
Rahim Yar Khan DPO Sohail Zafar Chattha was also present at the occasion. He briefed the IGP on problems faced by police in the district.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 29th, 2012.