LAHORE – The Punjab Assembly on Friday concluded debate on law and order situation in the province while the Opposition remained sceptical about any sincere efforts made by the government to ameliorate what it termed the worst situation mainly wrought by ill-doings of the law enforcers themselves.

Like two previous days of debate on law and order, the Opposition legislators targeted the Punjab Police and the Punjab Government for the poor law, order situation while Law Minister Rana Sanaullah and other treasury members held the Federal Government responsible for the crime in the province.

The enraged Opposition exploded the police efficiency so much that it wanted Rs 184 billions funds to the police department to be shifted to the people to let them defend themselves. The Treasury focused its tirade on the PPP-led Centre as it believed that electricity and gas loadshedding had not only brought the people on the road in protest but closure of industries by that factor, had led the poor workers to crime.

The session started 30-minute beyond the fixed time of 9am with Speaker Rana Muhammad Iqbal in the Chair and unlike other days, it went through the whole agenda. The attendance of the members remained thin despite the fact a highly important subject was under debate. Members continued to pop in and out and busy in private discourse evincing their lukewarm interest in the assembly business.

After exhausting the question-hour on the Revenue and Colonies Department the House took up adjournment motions and call attention notice followed by discussion on law and order wherein the Opposition strongly grilled the Government and the Police department.

Deputy Opposition Leader Shaukat Mahmood Basra opening the debate lambasted the law minister for pleading the police innocence in the committal of crimes and wanted name of the Law Minster to be recorded in the Guinness Book of World Record for his mendacity to shield the police. He posed a query if not the police stations are auctioned, and brothel houses, gambling and narcotics dens operated under the patronage of the police? He said why police salaries had been doubled against zero performance and why the CM made a tall claims of ending the thana culture when the police stations became ‘slaughter houses’ where touting and torture at the behest of the powerful was the order of the day. Basra said rape of the minors and day light dacoities even at GOR were taking place. Basra brought his scathing remarks to full motion when he attributed the law minister with ‘terrorists and banned religious organisations.’

His remarks provoked the treasury member Ali Asghar Munda who begun to speak against the Opposition and later on held PPP rulers spearheading the criminals for being themselves stealing the national wealth and tucking the same off in Swiss and other banks and still not satiated of corruption. However, the Chair silenced him while Basra continued to prove the incompetence of police.

“Law and order will be perfect when the economy will be smooth and today the energy crisis has obliged the jobless poor to stealing and dacoities”, Munda said.

Muhammad Mohsin Khan Leghari presented a useful suggestion for developing community security force of the locals in DG Khan and Rajanpur in addition to funding and equipping the border area force which speaks through its performance after it had captured a suicide bomber last year minutes before he was going to explode himself. He also wanted a gallantry award for the force. Muhammad Ilyas Chinioti suggested for necessary holding of open kutchery by the RPO in every district. A minority member called for religious tolerance and not allowing crime under the basis of religion.

Provincial Minister Ch Abdul Ghafoor said love with the Holy Prophet (SAW) is the article of faith of every Muslim who perhaps would not help stop himself if anyone will commit profanity about the Prophet (SAW) as such others must also respect these sentiments otherwise the people like Ghazi Ilamuddin would continue to grow. Speaker ruled that we all have to respect the religion of each other.

Samina Khawar Hayat in her strong diatribe on the police and the Punjab Government wanted Rs 184 billion of the police department to be shifted to people to let them defend themselves. She alleged the police were involved in thefts and car snatching, and wanted the Punjab Government to quit for failing to protect the citizens.

Abdul Rahman wanted the members to think above political affiliation if they have to seriously ameliorate the law and order. He said the overall system had failed whereof a layman was tense for not having redressal anywhere. He stressed on making the policies based on ground realities. He found incompetent persons enjoying high office in the administration and the government. Hassan Murtaza said if the CM is Khadame Ala then he should also make the police serving the people but the story was quite contrary.