LAHORE - Lahore police will reward citizens and community leaders with cash and certificates in case they would pass on useful information related to criminals and suspected militants.

The names of communicators will be kept secret. Also, police will blacklist those who would try to convey wrong information to the department.

Capital city police officer Muhammad Amin Wains told reporters that more than 3000 community leaders are enlisted under the latest “Local Eye” system designed with the help of Punjab information technology board to strengthen surveillance in the sprawling city. DIG (Investigations) Sultan Chaudhry, DIG Security Dr Moeen, SSP Rai Ijaz Ahmed, SSP Rana Ayyaz Saleem, and all divisional police officers were also present at the inaugural ceremony.

The CCPO said the initiative would empower the representatives of local government bodies, particularly female community leaders.  

“We request all citizens and community leaders to help us secure this city and its citizens. This digital technology has enabled city police to end communication gap between police and the public,” the additional inspector general of police.

Wains was talking to reporters after the formal launch of Local Eye software at the main Operations Room established at the Civil Lines police headquarters on Monday.

“Now, councilors and community leaders are just a click away. They can report to police within seconds and all reports will be seen simultaneously at various levels,” the city police chide said. “This is a pilot project and it would be extended to other parts of the province in different phases,” he added.

The officer further said the police would defeat criminals and terrorists with the active support of local leaders and citizens. He said that city police launched several software and mobile phone applications in recent years to stay in touch with communities and citizens.

“If someone uses our SMS service or other software to give police important information, he would be equally rewarded. We will review all complaints and reports on fortnightly and monthly basis. We expect, it will be very fruitful exercise and we call for public cooperation,” the officer said.

This new crime-preventing technology was designed to bridge communication gap between police officers and elected representatives, said Rana Ayyaz Saleem, who is supervising the digital police operations.

The plan is part of a full-fledged digital policing project that is underway in the province, the officer added.

Authorities wants that police operations should be conducted digitally as well. Therefore, the largest law enforcement agency is being equipped with software, hardware, and other communication networks based on handsets.

On this occasion, police officer Ayyaz Saleem also said that the Local Eye software would help police improve coordination with public at police station level. He said the police launched the new software in a bid to boost community policing. He said the new software will help the Chairmen, Vice-Chairmen and Councilors of the local union councils to contact the top ranking police officers within a few minutes in case of any problem. The public representatives can also report complaints against police by busing this software, he said.

In Lahore, the Local Eye was activated following the successful launching of Hotel Eye system. Last year, city police had linked more than 500 hotels with the crime database at state-of-the-art control rooms. The police provided android phones to the hotel managers and linked their computerised system to the police nerve-centers through the software in a bid to get details of all the visitors or guests.

Also, the police had arrested at least 450 criminals from different hotels after tracing them through the software. The police also checked the entries of no less than 200,000 guests in just 60 days.

Police use of modern technology is multiplying across the world. In addition to latest and well-equipped cars and heavy bikes, body cameras, CCTVs, in-vehicle computers, license plate readers, and fingerprint reading tools are gaining rapid adoption, according to security experts.

Officers in Lahore are seen checking the records of vehicles by using their handsets these days. Within a few second, they can trace the stolen vehicles by typing the car registration numbers on the mobile phones applications.