Reforms in Punjab police have been long due. The body, unfortunately, has become highly politicised. Thus, the force is failing in carrying out the tasks it is supposed to perform: protecting the citizens and keeping law and order. In Lahore alone, there have been 36 hits of crime in the last 24 hours. Several reasons explain the recent surge in crimes in Lahore that is Punjab’s capital. The first one is the appointment of the top brass of the police force in Lahore. Superintendents of Police’s (SPs) having no prior field experience are tasked with maintaining law and order of the city. As if that was not enough, appointing station house officers (SHOs) with tainted records also contribute to the worsening of law and order situation of the city. With such induction within the police force becoming rampant, the failure of the force to do its duty becomes glaringly evident by the day.

The introduction of the dolphin force on the streets of Lahore did help in the scrutiny of smaller crimes. However, the dolphin force is also now reluctant to work due to the lack of funds allotted to them. This is pushing the police force to resort to using improper patrolling vehicles. These problems need to be addressed along with incentivising the force to respond to these issues plaguing the city. The security of any area should not be compromised due to the lack of resources available to law enforcement agencies. This will allow criminals to form operational networks within the city that would be difficult to eradicate.

Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan has talked at length about the introduction of reforms in the Punjab police force, similar to the changes in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) police force. Model police stations being implemented in several areas of Punjab should also be extended to Lahore if the city requires such management. 10 model police stations have been set up in different areas of the Gujranwala region, four each in Faisalabad and Dera Ghazi Khan, three each in Rawalpindi, Sargodha and Multan, two in Sheikhupura and one in Attock. Lahore has been one of the safe cities of the country. The government along with the management of the city need to be vigilant about the on-going rise in crime and manage it to improve the workings of the police force, raise the standard for induction into the force, and help maintain the security of the city within the means available to the government of Pakistan.