A report in Nawa-i-Waqt revealing that 8321 incidents of the theft of cars and motorcycles have occurred in Lahore this year is a damning indictment of the Punjab police. That most of these incidents occurred in Model Town division is quite alarming and so is that the finding that on an average, 23 people are being robbed of their vehicles every day. And such robberies are not particular to Lahore but are being committed across the entire country.

Since things have deteriorated, it makes pretty obvious that the talk of reforming the police on modern lines is far too exaggerated. Some steps have been taken like increasing the salaries yet the dividend cannot be achieved. Training and lack of much-needed police-accountability system have been virtually missing. There is also the factor of how easily powerful criminals manipulate the lower court’s mechanism to get away with their deeds. The immediate concern is how policing is being done; clearly as the data tells us, it ought to be ramped up. Criminals roam the streets picking their targets at will while the victims’ ordeal starts from the registration process of the FIR. One expects the government to pay serious attention to the issue starting from a merit-oriented recruitment process in the law enforcement agencies to proper training to awarding severe punishment to errant officers.