Out of the 45,448 first information reports (FIRs) registered in 86 districts across Pakistan in May 2012, 63% cases were reported in Punjab, followed by Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (21%), Sindh (14%), Balochistan (1%) and Islamabad Capital Territory (1%).
According to a recent crime monitoring report released by the Free and Fair Election Network (Fafen), 46% of the FIRs were registered in only 10 districts — with the most being lodged in Lahore (13%), Faisalabad (6%) and Peshawar (5%).
Surprisingly, Karachi was not listed among the most volatile cities — a better outreach, lack of parallel judicial systems and a higher confidence level between the police and the people were said to be the reasons for better crime reporting in Punjab than other regions.
In order to prepare the report, Fafen’s observers visited 86 offices of District Police Officers (DPOs) to collect data on FIRs registered for 27 offences falling under the Pakistan Penal Code. The report includes in its analysis only crimes for which an FIR was lodged — since many criminal acts go unreported, the actual figures might be different than the reported ones.
Of the 86 districts monitored, 28 were in Punjab, 26 in Sindh, 20 in K-P, 11 in Balochistan and one in ICT.
According to the report, theft was the most frequent crime in May, for which 2,430 FIRs were registered in 66 districts, followed by hurt (2,345), motor vehicle lifting (2,048), counterfeiting currency (1,791), attempted murder (1231), murder (996), motor vehicle snatching (721), cheating (589) and criminal trespassing (493).
In the month under review, of the total FIRs lodged, 63% were filed for offences grouped as ‘other crimes’, followed by those pertaining to property (17%), crimes involving physical harm (11%), threat and fraud (7%) and crimes against women (3%).
The report said that only crimes resulting in physical harm saw an overall increase in the quarter, which escalated from 48 FIRs per district in April to 58 in May.
More than 1,200 FIRs were also lodged for crimes against women — these included FIRs for forced marriages (32%), outraging modesty by assault or criminal force (30%), rape (22%), offences relating to marriage (11%), honour killings (4%) and insulting women’s modesty through word or gesture (1%). Rape was the most widespread crime in this category with 272 cases being registered in 48 districts. Rahimyar Khan (23) and Faisalabad (20) had the most cases of rape.
Fafen’s report further stated that there were 4,489 FIRs lodged for crimes resulting in physical harm and of these, 57% were filed in Punjab, 21% in Sindh, 14% in K-P, 3% in Balochistan and 2% in ICT.
Motor vehicle lifting was another most frequent crime with 2,048 FIRs being lodged in 53 districts. Of these FIRs, around 80% were registered in Punjab —with Lahore (742) reporting the most number of cases.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 2nd, 2012.