LAHORE – In order to control rising crime in the big cities particularly Lahore, Gujranwala and Faisalabad, the Punjab police have finalised two key proposals including extension of Crimes Investigations Agency (CIA) and upgrading of Investigations Wing of the police. The provincial police chief Muhammad Habib-ur-Rehman last week completed his in-depth visits to police headquarters in Lahore, Bahawalpur, Multan, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi, Sargodha, and Gujranwala police regions. During his unusual visits, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) met under-training, junior and senior policemen as well as the regional and district police officers. He also visited different police stations, police lines, district headquarters and barracks to understand the shortfalls in the policing. The policemen serving in big cities and those working in far-flung areas discussed their problems with the IGP. Muhammad Habib-ur-Rehman also thoroughly checked the crime rate, nature of heinous crimes, and record of the proclaimed offenders and hardened criminals in each district. The police high-command decided to give top priority to two major cities including Lahore and Faisalabad in the first phase. According to insiders, the IGP called in a follow-up meeting of top police officers at the provincial headquarters on Saturday. The entire police hierarchy from Lahore and Faisalabad Regions attended the meeting and discussed the major crimes related issues and suggested various proposals. CCPO Lahore Ahmed Raza Tahir, DIG (Operations) Punjab Sohail Khan, DIG (Operations) and DIG (investigations) Lahore, RPO Faisalabad Aftab Ahmed Cheema, AIG (Operations) Punjab Muhammad Shehzad Sultan, DPOs of Jhang, Sargodha, Toba Tek Singh and Chiniot districts also attended the meeting. The district police officers briefed the IGP about the progress on the Model Police Station project, establishment of CIA, reinforcement of watch and ward system, and the initiatives taken to arrest proclaimed offenders and to nab the gangsters involved in kidnapping for ransom. They also discussed various proposals to improve the security of the banks in order to control bank robberies. The police high-ups finalised two key proposals to improve the working of the Investigations Wing and to expand the CIA’s role to across the province. The police command also agreed to divide Lahore and Faisalabad in two divisions on administrative grounds. According to the proposed amendments, a police officer of DIG rank will be head of each division while two SSPs would report directly to him. The divisional head will work under the direct command of an officer of Additional IG rank, who will supervise the overall affairs in the city. Similarly, the police high-ups also agreed to expand the role of Crimes Investigations Agency (CIA) to all over the province. The basic job of the CIA, headed by a PSP officer, would be to eliminate criminals’ gangs involved in organised crimes like kidnapping for ransom, major robberies, blind murders and multiple killings. The police also finalised a strategy to carry out raids on hotels and guesthouses in case they receive genuine and valid information about criminal activities, taking place in such a facility. The district police officers also briefed the IGP about the biometric attendance system being installed in the police stations to monitor the police working. They also briefed the IGP that experts are working to install tracking system in each police vehicle in order to keep a check on the movement of the policemen. Meanwhile, IGP Muhammad Habib-ur-Rehman lauded the efforts of Faisalabad police for capturing the main accused, namely Asghar, involved in Samina Akhtar rape case. The Supreme court of Pakistan had taken suo moto notice of the gang-rape case and directed the police to ban the rapists. The police had arrested four accused in the case while the main accused was at large since the gruesome incident tool place in Faisalabad. Police sources say that the IGP has begun police overhaul and a series of meetings of the police high-ups are expected in the days ahead to implement the new police strategy to fight organised crimes and to improve the working of the specialised wings of the police. Sources also believed that a reshuffle in the police command is also likely in the near future as IGP Muhammad Habib-ur-Rehman has decided to put the crime fighters on key police slots.This news was published in The Nation newspaper. Read complete newspaper of 25-Mar-2012 here.