The Lahore police higher-ups have given a green signal to make more appointments of lady police officers after it received positive public feedback during the first 10 days of posting of six women officers as heads of the investigation wings at the city’s police stations.
The Lahore police has six divisions and the appointments have been made at one police station of each division. Inspector Farhat was posted as in-charge of investigation at Wahdat Colony police station, Sub-Inspector Sadaf Rasheed at Quaid-i-Azam Industrial Area police station, SI Sumaira Nazir at Model Town police station, SI Ambrin Rehman at the Defence A police station, SI Shazia Kausar at Akbari Gate and SI Sonia Liaquat was posted in-charge investigation at the Racecourse police station.
Though it constituted nearly five per cent of the total postings in 84 police stations, the move was declared a positive sign to increase the women representation in the police.
An official told Dawn that the appointments of lady police officers as heads of the investigation wings at the police stations in Lahore had inspired more women to play a leadership role. He said the underrepresentation of the women in police stations had gone unnoticed. It is evident from the fact that Lahore has one lady police station out of 84 despite the fact that women constitute 48 per cent of the total population of the city and they need support of lady police officers to stop gender discrimination.
The decision-making authorities in the police have kept the women police officials away from the investigation wing because of nature of risks involved. Recently, IGP Faisal Shahkar expressed his plan to encourage women police officers. He said the appointment of lady police officers would also help change the thana culture or police image in the public.
The official said Lahore was a tough city to serve for the police officials in all ranks as it reported over 0.2 million annual cases of crime annually, which was more than the total crime of half of Punjab. The investigation wing of Lahore police in particular faces tremendous challenges to improve conviction rate against hardened criminals.
He said the burden of cases on the investigation officers had led to the high crime in the city as most criminals resumed their activities due to the faulty investigations and poor prosecution.
In April this year, the Lahore investigation police had taken up the issues with the then IGP, citing a lack of IOs, shortage of other staff, equipment, transport and funds.