The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) government has approved the acquisition of a state-of-the-art mobile phone tracking system for police and other law enforcement agencies in the province at an initial cost of Rs200 million, sources told The Express Tribune on Thursday.
The amount has been approved by the provincial finance department and the Chief Minister’s Secretariat in the wake of a string of deadly terror attacks in the city that killed at least 150 people in the span of eight days last month.
The tracking system will enable police to track down mobile phones of militants in the province for the first time. The facility was previously only available to the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and Military Intelligence (MI). Police had to rely on their surveillance, which was a time-consuming process.
“This is a huge leap forward and will help police a great deal,” said an official.
“It is a computerised and state-of-the-art technology which is a must in the war on terror. The primary tool for terrorists in Pakistan as well as in Afghanistan these days is the mobile phone,” he said. The official added it will be a big advantage to the police in acting against extortionists and kidnappers.
Similarly, police have made special security arrangements for sensitive areas of the city, including Dabgari Gardens where Elite Force Commandos will be deployed.
Official sources said the police quick response force will be on red alert 24 hours a day to cope with any emergency that may arise. “There are reports that terrorists are planning to target Nato supply containers on Ring Road and Jamrud Road, churches, schools, colleges, missionary hospitals and other sensitive areas, including government buildings,” said one official.
“All these reports have been conveyed to the quarters concerned and strict security measures are being taken in this regard, including the deployment of police commandos,” he said. It had already been decided to divide Peshawar into four zones to reduce the chances of further terrorist attacks.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 4th, 2013.