KARACHI: Giving priority to law and order, the Sindh government has increased the amount allocated to the sector by Rs9 billion in its budget for the year 2019-20. "The allocation for law and order sector has increased from Rs100.4 billion in 2018-19 to Rs109.78 billion in the next financial year 2019-20," said the Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah in his budget speech.
In the budget books, some schemes have been proposed for revamping the counter-terrorism department and creating a professional and dedicated force styled as the Counter-Terrorism Force (CTF).
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"The police will establish an additional 259 reporting rooms under an ADP [Annual Development Programme] scheme in the next financial year to streamline the process and grant easy access to the public," the budget proposal stated. Apart from this, the Sindh government has decided to create 3,000 new posts in different grades in the police.
"Around 3,690 police personnel have been recruited through the National Testing Services (NTS) and recruitment of 4,507 police personnel is under process," the budget document stated. It further said that five facilitation centers would be established at the divisional level wherein common men can come for the redressal of their grievances like issues of character verification, report of loss of valuable things, the complaint of the crime on spot, missing child, domestic violence, vehicle theft, etc.
The CM, who also holds the portfolio of finance department, giving credit to his government in their ability to ensure law and order in the province said, "We have adopted a three-pronged strategy to combat law and order challenges, building capacity of human resource through training, utilising the latest technology, particularly use of IT, and recognising the services of those who embraced "Shahadat" or were injured in line of duty".
The budget books in this respect revealed that Rs1,000 million has been disbursed as compensation to martyred and injured personnel. The bomb disposal squads equipment has been enhanced with the latest technology and throughout Sindh IT labs and reporting rooms at offices and police stations have been established.
For the home department, the provincial government has allocated around Rs1,639 million in the annual development programme. Different police stations, highway posts would be established and police stations, compound walls of police stations and trainings centres as well as multi-story flats for police officials would be constructed. In the development budget for the upcoming fiscal year, the government has earmarked Rs40 million for the establishment of a forensic laboratory in Karachi. However, Rs15 billion has been reserved for the establishment of an explosives forensic lab at Karachi.
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In the new schemes, there is provision for the construction and rehabilitation of watchtowers and barracks at prisons in Karachi and other districts. For this, the government has allocated around Rs80 million. Around Rs138 million has been allocated for residences of anti-terrorism court judges and prison officers at Karachi Central Jail and flats for prison staff at Hyderabad Central Jail as well as the construction of residential colony for the staff of Hyderabad women jail.
The budget documents further stated, "Rs20 million has been kept for the installation of jammers in various prisons of Sindh".
Published in The Express Tribune, June 15th, 2019.
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