LAHORE - Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif yesterday visited Punjab Forensic Science Agency and presided over a meeting to review its performance.

The chief minister also inspected the automatic modern system of database for identification of weapons and appreciated Director General Forensic Science Agency and his team for introducing this new system.

He also visited the centers for the training of officers and staff of other institutions and expressed his satisfaction over the training facilities.

Shahbaz Sharif also inspected the training center of crime scene set up in the lab. Later, presiding over a high level meeting at Punjab Forensic Science Agency, the chief minister said that the biggest and the most modern forensic science lab of South Asia has been set up in Punjab, which meets international standards.

He said that samples of cases are sent from foreign countries to this lab for verification and punishment is also awarded to culprits on its report which is a proof of splendid performance of this lab.

He said that an automatic and modern database system for identification of weapons has recently been introduced in Punjab Forensic Science Agency. He directed that immediate measures should be adopted for transferring the record of weapons to the modern database system.

The chief minister also gave approval for setting up a modern system for database of fingerprints in the lab. He said that satellite centers of forensic science lab will be set up in all divisions of Punjab which will help in collection of evidence of crime at the local level.

The chief minister said that project of satellite centers is of vital importance in the provision of justice and will help in improvement of the standard of evidence. He directed that satellite centers at divisional level should be set up speedily and this process should be completed by March.

The meeting decided that in the second phase, satellite centers will be established in 36 districts of the province. Shahbaz Sharif directed authorities concerned to take immediate steps for setting up satellite centers of forensic science lab at district level. He directed that special attention should be paid to training of officers and officials of prosecution and police for the improvement of criminal justice system and a separate lab will be set up at Forensic Science Agency so that modern training could be imparted to maximum officials.

He said that steps are necessary for harmonizing medical legal system with the demands of modern age and recommendations should be presented after reviewing all necessary issues in this regard. He said that forensic lab is of vital importance in the investigation of cases and Punjab Forensic Science Agency is rendering commendable services in verification of the evidence of crime.

He said that Punjab government has set up a state-of-the-art forensic lab of Asia at a cost of billions of rupees. He said that the fact that countries like America, Britain, Norway are others sending samples for investigation of cases to this lab reflect its efficiency and performance. The chief minister said that he was pleased to see the work being carried out in a professional manner in the agency. He said that the performance of Forensic Science Agency is appreciated not only in Pakistan but also abroad.

Special Assistant Rana Maqbool Ahmed, Chief Secretary Khizar Hayat Gondal, IG Police, Advocate General Punjab, Secretary Home, Secretary Law and concerned officers were present on the occasion.

Meanwhile, a high-level delegation of Turkish National Police met Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif. Speaking on the occasion, the chief minister said that cooperation between Turkey and Pakistan is increasing in the tenure of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and several Turk companies are making investment in Pakistan.

He said that Turkish National Police is extending full cooperation for reforms in Police System and training of police officials in Punjab.

He said that Punjab government will set up a special police unit on the pattern of Riot Police Unit of Istanbul to deal with protestors and cooperation of Turkish National Police is welcomed in this regard.

Shahbaz Sharif said that Punjab will benefit from the experience of Turkish National Police in the setting up of Riot Police Unit. He said that officials of Turkish National Police will also impart training to officers and officials of Punjab police in this regard. He said that there will be separate uniform of officers and officials of Riot Police Unit.

The chief minister also appreciated the cooperation of Turkish National Police for the training of dolphin police force and said that it will soon take up its responsibilities after completion of training.

The Turkish delegation informed the Chief Minister that training of dolphin force will soon be completed and it will assume its duties from the beginning of March. Inspector General Police, Secretary Home, Secretary to CM Punjab and Additional IG Special Branch were also present on the occasion.