Paramilitary forces have urged improvement of security measures in the areas of Chakwal, Attock and Rawalpindi, which fall along the Nato supply routes.
Fearing militant attacks on Nato containers in these areas, the spy agency of the Punjab Police has urged law enforcers to take extra measures to beef up security for the convoys. Following the report submitted by the Rawalpindi superintendent of police’s special branch, the government of Punjab has directed the commissioner of Rawalpindi division to take necessary measures to beef up security.
Furthermore, on July 17, the district heads of Rawalpindi, Chakwal and Attock directed the concerned areas’ superintendents and station house officers to take necessary steps to ensure the security of the containers and their drivers.
According to the report available with The Express Tribune, district heads have asked the police to be extra mindful of security on the Attock, Chakwal and Rawalpindi passages, since there has been a history of attacks on these locations. In 2010, over 100 Nato tankers were torched while parked in a private terminal near Rawalpindi, while in 2011, extremists set fire to containers in Attock and Chakwal.
The special branch in its report has cautioned that such attacks could take place in the future, since the Nato supply routes are operational again. Giving details of the routes, the report said the truckers enter the Tala Gang area of Chakwal from Mianwali. They proceed towards Fateh Jang in Attock and then to Taxila before re-entering Attock at Hasanabdal. There are no special arrangements of stay made for the truckers, and they often stop over at locations devoid of security cover.
The second route in the Rawalpindi region starts from Sara-i-Kala in Chakwal and proceeds to New City Phase-I to Taxila and then to the Attock. From there, it moves to Peshawar. The special branch report has also identified Attock Dhalian, Pindi Gheb, Khor Roa, Faqirabad, Hattian Chowk, Haji Shah and Attock Khurd Road as security sensitive locations along the route.
Other areas that need special security measures include Dharnal, Galli Jahangir, Burhan, Hattian, Hazro and Gondal. In Chakwal, hotels in the Dhoke Pathan area and Balkasar need special attention since the truckers stop over at these locations.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 20th, 2012.
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