Rawalpindi-The district administration yesterday shut down over 100 branches of different banks in the city over improper security arrangements.

The unprecedented move was made by district government and police after Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif took stern action of the bank heist at Chuhur Chowk wherein six robbers plundered more than Rs 2 million on Wednesday last.

The police also directed the management of different banks to follow security SOP, they said. A spokesman to City Police Officer (CPO) Israr Ahmed Khan Abbasi confirmed closure of more than 100 branches of different bank in the city by police over poor security.

According to sources, the district government and police teams inspected many banks in the city and barred the managements of those banks from work where security arrangements were not up to the mark or as per the SOP issued by Punjab government to avoid bank robberies.

As a result, the customers and citizens faced a lot of troubles as they could not cash their cheques or retrieve amount from ATMs.

Meanwhile, CPO Israr Ahmed Khan Abbasi has warned of strict action against all the banks which fail to implement the advisory for security arrangements. He also paid visits to various parts of the city and inspected the security arrangements at banks.

“Yes we have directed banks to take some extra measures to avoid any future crime,” CPO Abbasi said when contacted.

He said that just one extra fence gate was required outside main gate to regulate entry of visitors. He added, “It is not expensive and make banks safer.”

SI Syed Imran, the spokesman to police, in a statement, said that police has stopped working the managements of more than 100 banks in the city due to improper security arrangements.

On the other hand, Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif took strict notice of the bank heist at Chuhur Chowk. The CM has directed Regional Police Officer Wisal Fakhar Sultan Raja and City Police Officer Israr Ahmed Abbasi to take stern action against the police officials and the bank staff involved in security lapses.

Police sources privy to the investigations about the bank heist told The Nation that Punjab home secretary made a call to the senior police officers in Rawalpindi and asked them to check who was responsible in security lapses at the banks.

The police official further said that bank officials had not given exact amount taken away by the six robbers. He said that police had obtained the CCTV footage but the images grabbed by the cameras are not clear. The security alarm of the bank did not function. Furthermore, there was no police guard present outside the bank. The police are still clueless about the gang involved in looting bank, a source told.

Separately, city traffic police also revealed traffic plan to avoid traffic rush and facilitate the citizens on the occasion of entry tests for medical colleges.

No citizen would be allowed to park his/her vehicle along Sixth Road to Siddiqui Chowk. The traffic police have allocated specific parking places and strict action would be taken against the violators.