The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police Department is applauded for breaking away from cultural shackles and launching the first ever women police commandos. A further 150 commandos will also be trained to back the police force when needed. The province has remained vulnerable to unannounced enemy attacks and extreme emergency cases weigh down the already under resourced police with crushing burdens. Support through skilful expertise and logistics will help boost the morale of the force and also aid in restoring the public’s confidence in the law enforcement agencies.

Women in Pakistan have been under represented in most official capacities and the police is no exception. However such measures will diversify the professional opportunities for women, help them achieve independence, self assurance and gain respect in official capacity. Many women complainants and victims will find relief and comfort in reporting crimes to female police officers. Although this is a step in the right direction, authorities have to remain mindful of the fact that the forces are largely male dominated and in Pakistan civilians are less inclined to follow instructions from a woman even if she were clad in a police uniform.

There is a need to adopt special measures in that the society needs to be acclimatised with the authority of the new female force. Arrangements should also be made for the newly qualified women officers to settle in and manage their grievances in their new workplace in a patriarchal society.

BARRISTER MOBEEN SHAH,

United Kingdom, February 13.