MULTAN - The Prime minister’s hometown is faced with serious shortage of cops as just one policeman is available for every 1,000 residents of Multan. The comparison of total population and number of available policemen in Multan and Lahore reveals that only 4,000 cops are deployed to safeguard the lives of four million Multanites compared to 33000 for 10 million Lahorites. The cop-citizen ratio in Lahore stands at one policemen per 303 citizens.

“Out of nine posts of superintendents of Multan police (SPs), just three are occupied while six are vacant,” disclosed City Police Officer Muhammad Amir Zulfiqar Khan, while explaining the gravity of the situation during a meeting on Saturday. The meeting was held to review law and order situation in the district and provincial minister Haji Ehsan Uddin Qureshi chaired the proceedings.

“No officer is ready to get transferred to Multan. Besides two divisions, even the post of SP (Investigations) is also vacant,” he pointed out. He claimed that despite very tough conditions and understaffing, the district police succeeded to maintain law and order in the district. “Although the number of our contingent is very low compared to the total of population, still crime ratio in Multan district is the lowest among five big cities of Punjab,” he claimed. Citing the example of Lahore, he said that 33000 cops were available for 10 million population while all SP posts were also filled but still the crime rate in provincial capital was much higher than Multan. “We have one cop for 1,000 citizens while the ratio for the same in Lahore is one for 303. Still the graph of crime is very low,” he added. He lamented that the district police had to face serious difficulty in monitoring areas and police stations because of shortage of officers. “Even we need to bring cops from other districts whenever prime minister comes to Multan,” he added.

He told the meeting that Jamaat-e-Islami was barred from holding public meeting at Chowk Kachehri on March 30 because of security reasons and they were asked to hold their event at sports ground. He asked the public representatives to brief the Chief Minister on shortage of police officers in Multan and convince him to fill vacant posts of SPs besides deploying more cops in this district.  To a query, he disclosed that out of five accused involved in a murder during by-polls, three were arrested while two others had got interim bail.