Cop calling: Protesting against police apathy

Hundreds of residents rally outside Thikriwala station against SHO.

Express August 15, 2011

FAISALABAD: Hundreds of villagers staged a demonstration against the atrocities of the Thikriwala police station house officer (SHO). Residents of the area demanded strict action against the police official for patronizing criminals and for his failure to protect the life and property of locals in the area people.

The protesters claimed that several cases of heinous crimes were not being registered by the police and in other cases several people who had been arrested by police were severely beaten in police custody. “This police station has become notorious for police torture and police often take people in without issuing a warrant,” said a protestor Ashar Hadi.

“Whenever villagers succeed in rounding up criminals and handing them over to the Thikriwala police, the men are released without taking appropriate action. They let the criminals go and arrest the innocent,” Musawwar Khan said.

Hundreds of local residents said that incidents of theft, street crimes and cattle lifting had increased exponentially and the reason was that police officials always let the criminals off. On this occasion, Haleema  Bibi told reporters that her husband Khalid was killed in an Ameenpur bungalow about two days ago and his body was also removed from the scene.

“Despite lodging a complaint, the area police have not registered a case against the accused Suleman, Accho and others. The men told me the police were ‘in their pocket’,” she said. Haleema Bibi demanded that a case be registered regarding her husband’s murder and the accused be arrested. “If the police still refuse to take action I will commit suicide outside the CPO’s office. Let’s see if he can ignore that,” she said.

The demonstrators also raised slogans against the Thikriwala SHO and suspended traffic for hours by blocking the Faisalabad-University Road before the City District Government Complex.

However, the protesters dispersed peacefully on the assurance of the  Civil Line district superintendent police (DSP), who assured that a thorough investigation would be conducted into the workings of the Thikriwala station and that their grievances would be redressed on a priority basis.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 15th, 2011.


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