LAHORE - In search of militants, Lahore police are searching every nook and corner of the provincial metropolis particularly religious seminaries and low-income neighbourhoods as thousands of cops are taking part in the campaign.

Police are conducting late night search operations against suspected elements in Lahore after intelligence inputs indicated militants were planning terror assaults in Punjab.

A police spokesman said on Thursday that special search operations were launched across the metropolis on the orders of Lahore Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Chaudhry Shafique Ahmed to grill and detain suspected persons, especially outsiders.

Lahore DIG (Operations) Rana Abdul Jabbar has been personally monitoring this campaign while all the divisional SPs and more than 2,500 cops are taking part in the crackdown.

The police spokesman said that the policemen searched 15 seminaries, 40 hotels and inns, 24 hostels, 55 godowns, 47 workshops, 316 houses and 21 factories located in the Civil Lines police division during the last 48 hours. Police also briefly interrogated some 1,200 persons.

“Out of 350 detained persons, police released 300 after investigation. Another 50 suspects are being interrogated as they could not prove their identity,” Nayab Haider Naqvi said.

Several police teams headed by SP Civil Lines Umer Riaz Cheema carried out search operations in Race Course, Qila Gujjar Singh, Garhi Shahu, Old Anarkali, Mozang, Choburji, Jain Mandar, Lytton Road, Shalimar, Gujjarpura, Mughalpura, and other areas.

Meanwhile, the house owners are directed by the police to submit the particulars of their tenants in the respective police stations within three days.

A police official claimed that search operations were launched in the wake of intelligence reports to tighten the screws on the criminals and militants. Police briefly detained more than 3000 suspected persons during the last couple of days.

Most of them were released after they provided identity papers and other information to the police, the official added. Lahore police are yet to make any breakthrough as no important arrest has been made yet since the search operations wee launched.