Sleuths’ performance goes downhill

Poor challan ratio exposes tall claims of Rawalpindi police

Qaiser Shirazi April 21, 2024


The investigation wing of the Rawalpindi district police performed below average in the first quarter (Jan 1 to March 31) of the year 2004, official statistics available to The Express Tribune reveal. The performance of 30 police stations depicts a disappointing picture in terms of submission of complete challans in cases.

The SSP Investigation and his team ‘failed’ to meet the deadline for submitting the challans to the courts after the investigations. During this quarter, as many as 10,819 cases were registered at all police stations, however, only 595 cases were presented as final complete challans in courts. Within the constitutional period of 14 days, the complete challan could not be submitted in 10,224 cases.

However, the investigation wing teams later submitted 1,549 incomplete interim challans. Throughout the period, as many as 41 cases were registered, but the police failed to trace them. Furthermore, 127 FIRs were dismissed as fake. A total of 76 cases of murder, 839 cases of robbery, and 2,732 cases of theft and lock breaking were registered during the period.

As many as 269 cases of abduction of women for rape, 116 of fraud, 21 of rape of women and children, 14 cases of terrorism, 139 of attempted murders, 435 of weapons recovery, 341 of narcotics, 49 of traffic accidents, and 269 cases of border violations were registered. The police were only able to submit full challans in cases of drug, alcohol, gambling, arms recovery, and traffic accidents.

On the other hand, the investigation teams' performance in submitting complete challans for major cases such as car theft, murder, and kidnapping for rape has been quite unsatisfactory. Due to delays in presenting challans for heinous cases, the accused managed to escape after securing bails from the courts. It’s common practice that the accused of serious cases usually take advantage of the delays in the challan submission process.

According to senior lawyers Sabatin Bukhari, Shanzeb Khan, and GM Shah, the emergence of new methods and trends in crimes and quickness in committing crimes has created the need to extend the period for submitting a full challan in a case to 40 days. It’s also essential to establish forensic lab test facilities at divisional locations to enhance efficiency and effectiveness.

They are of of view that the investigation officers should be segregated within police stations and night patrolling and duties shouldn’t be assigned to these officers so that they could solely focus on the investigation work. These measures would enhance the effectiveness and vitality of investigations, ultimately leading to an increase in conviction rates.

A senior IO says that the challan submission could improve if the investigation wing officials are spared from crackdowns against the workers of a political party and the daily duties of monitoring political leaders and workers. Additionally, he adds that it’s vital to ensure that the IOs receive timely and complete payment for their investigation costs as they do not have the expense of transporting the accused from the police stations to the Adiala Jail. The official says that the IOs are left with no choice but to recover the expenses from the plaintiff and the accused’s parties. According to the official, stationery for the investigation is procured from the relatives of the accused.

When contacted, a police spokesman claims that the challan ratio of the investigation police has witnessed improvement this year.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 21st, 2024.


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