LAHORE: The Police Department has received 1,000 biometric devices from the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) for use at police stations across the province to track terrorism suspects and proclaimed offenders.
PITB Chairman Dr Umar Saif distributed the devices among police officers of Dera Ghazi Khan, Bahawalpur, Multan, Sahiwal and Rawalpindi divisions on Friday.
Devices were handed over to officers of Lahore, Sheikhupura, Faisalabad, Sargodha and Gujranwala regions on Thursday.
Speaking at the ceremony on Thursday, Saif told those present that the portable devices would be installed at 709 police stations in the province.
He said that the devices were equipped with 3G internet subscriber identity modules (SIMs) linked to the National Database and Regulatory Authority (NADRA).
The police official could also use them to verify particulars of suspects held at check posts as well as during raids.
Saif said a Punjab Information Technology Board team had trained 80 junior police officers in the use of the device. These officers would now train staff from across the province.
Saif said the use of biometric devices had been tested by the police assigned duties at Gaddafi Stadium during the recent tour of Zimbabwean cricket team.
Of the 1,000 devices, 103 were given to police stations in Lahore district, 50 to Faisalabad, 41 each to Rawalpindi and Multan, 40 to Gujranwala, 37 to Rahim Yar Khan, 37 to Sialkot, 32 to Sargodha, 30 to Gujrat, 29 each to Bahawalpur and Mianwali, 27 to Kasur, 26 to Muzaffargarh, 24 each to Attock and Bahawalnagar, 23 each to Sheikhupura, Okara and Dera Ghazi Khan, 21 each to Jhang, Sahiwal, Rajanpur and Vehari, 20 to Khanewal, 16 to Bhakkar, 14 to Narowal, 13 each to Jhelum and Chakwal, 12 to Pakpattan, 11 each to Nankana, Mandi Bahaud Din, Toba Tek Singh and Chiniot, 10 each to Hafizabad and Lodhran, nine to Khushab and eight to Layyah.
As many as 50 devices were given to the Counter Terrorism Department, 10 to the Special Branch and 50 held in reserve stock.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 27th, 2015.