Trigger-happy security guards

Editorial June 11, 2024


The recent deadly incidents of trigger-happy private security guards killing a young TikToker and a child scavenger in Karachi are deeply concerning and raise serious questions about the regulation and training of security personnel employed in the city. The tragic deaths are stark reminders of the dangers posed by untrained and ill-prepared security guards. These individuals, entrusted with maintaining safety and security, have instead become perpetrators of violence, causing irreparable harm to families and communities.

It is evident that there is a pressing need for stricter regulation and oversight of private security firms, as well as comprehensive training programmes for security personnel. The current lack of standards and accountability has led to a situation where unqualified guards are allowed to carry firearms and exercise authority without proper guidance or supervision. Furthermore, the use of lethal force in these incidents is particularly alarming. Security guards must be trained to de-escalate conflicts and treat violence as a last resort. Their role should be one of protection and deterrence, not indiscriminate use of firearms leading to loss of life.

The authorities must take immediate action to address this issue. This includes conducting thorough background checks on individuals employed as security guards, implementing mandatory training and certification programmes, and ensuring that private security companies adhere to stringent regulations. There is also a need for improved coordination between law enforcement agencies and private security firms to monitor and evaluate the conduct of private guards. Any misconduct or abuse of power should be swiftly addressed, and the responsible individuals held accountable for their actions. Companies and managers should also face some liability if their employees are involved in criminal or negligent conduct. Otherwise, they will happily pay any fines and keep making a bundle using underpaid and underqualified guards.


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