islamabad - Federal Ombudsman Salman Faruqui on Thursday underlined the need for making police citizens friendly in order to build trust of people and overcome crimes in an effective and pro-active manner.

Faruqui expressed these views while presiding over a high-level meeting here at the Wafaqi Mohtasib Secretariat to finalise the report on good administration standards for police stations and measures to curb mal-administration in compliance with the order of the Supreme Court of Pakistan. “General perception is that the police stations were not citizen friendly even though the citizens have the constitutional right to be treated impartially and fairly,” he said while calling for simplifying the cumbersome process of lodging FIRs. He said that everybody has a right to register complaint but there should be proper mechanism and filtration of malicious FIRs.

He said: “There is a need for formulation of such recommendations in the context of law enforcement that registration of FIR in all civil and criminal cases could be facilitated while action must be taken against the persons who lodge false FIRs.”

The Wafaqi Mohtasib emphasised that the police stations should be made a place where the people could freely and fearlessly visit to lodge complaints against any oppression and injustice in the hope of immediate and professional follow up.

Pointing towards the report prepared by the committee, Faruqui expressed the confidence that it will also advise about the territorial coverage by police stations in urban and rural areas.

Addressing the meeting, Abbas Khan, chairman of the committee stated that they urged the improvement of the working of police stations for being the most important level of the institution of police.

He lamented that the police have neither been adequately equipped nor trained on modern lines to discharge their duties effectively, conversely policing in Pakistan has been badly ignored and is totally unprepared to meet the challenges of today.

Meanwhile, the participants of the meeting unanimously agreed that Islamabad should be chosen as the first city where the pilot project of police reforms should be implemented in true letter and spirit after which these reforms would be rationalised to other parts of the country.

The members of the committee suggested that an effective external oversight mechanism should be put in place for the sake of registration and investigation of cases.

They were also of the view that the police system could not get better until and unless it is de-politicised and state-of-the-art training is imparted to police officials.

There is also a dire need of restructuring the whole police process on the pattern of motorway police, they said and emphasised that police stations should be provided with adequate funds for making their investigation and other requirements.

The committee ended with a note that stress should be given on materialising the suggestions and recommendations in true letter and spirit.