Dawn News

Training the police

EARLIER this month a man named Julien Chabbott was arrested as he ran over his $260,000 Ferrari sports car on a policeman’s foot who was writing him a parking ticket on a busy street in New York. According to sources, Chabbott can now face potential felony charges and, if convicted, possibly up to four years in prison.

This is one of the many examples from the West sending a staunch message that justice is equal for everyone, doesn’t matter how wealthy you are or what car you drive!

Such a reaction by the police towards someone owning a luxury car is inconceivable in Pakistan. Here, one is stopped and searched according to the car’s monetary worth. If one owns a motorbike or a hatchback, it’s likely that he’ll at least be stopped once before reaching his destination.

On the contrary, if he owns a ‘big car’ (what they call it), your comfort will not be cut short, even if you look like a Taliban from North Waziristan. Instead you’ll be greeted with a courteous salutes and/or smile and might even be offered tea (doodh pattee) from a pull in ( dhaaba). Chances staggeringly increase if the car has a green/blue number plate on it.

This is owed mainly to the previous and current inept governments’ improper selection criteria and training for police officials.

Karachi being the largest and most populous city in Pakistan comes at the third place in the list of the most dangerous cities of the world. Regardless of such alarming figures, the number of policemen allotted for the city’s protection is 32,000. More than half of them are ‘protecting’ the VIPs and VVIPs. Only a handful remain for our protection. Since 2003 almost 6,500 people have lost their lives in different violence-related incidents in the city. The blame-game continues but what is expected of a force so underpaid, untrained and uneducated.

To counter this inefficiency the government’s primary focus should be to properly train the police. A more disciplined form of training method with a relatively extended time period should be adopted to fill this gap.

This should include awareness about relevant criminal, constitutional and local laws and ascetic physical training in firearm use and self-defence. Most importantly, they should realise the importance of the already-laid code of conduct to be respectful towards the community irrespective of their status.

OMER MAHAR Karachi


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Comments (4) Closed



Gerry D'Cunha
Aug 16, 2012 10:58am
Before training your police, I would advice the police trainers to train themself in one of the best policing country in the world i.e UK;USA;Canada:Australia; UAE etc. Our police basic training should be to respect its citizen and help them in their needs - avoid bribe transfers of SHOs.
Cyrus Howell
Aug 16, 2012 03:14am
Most police in America are recruited from the army and marine corps after they are welcomed back to civilian life. The organization of police is like military organizations. Veterans of the military do not need to be taught as much as other recruits. They already know about uniforms, chain of command, formations and firearms. The have already had a similar standard to follow. They already know what police training is about. Just transfer people from the army to the police for an upgrade.
Haji Ashfaq
Aug 16, 2012 07:42am
The police recruits also are part of the society we live in - uneducated, corrupt, munafiq mentality,intolerent and what not and the worst when you have to pay 1,2 or 5 lac for enrolment only, what can one expect. Like our legislators - they all try to recover election expenses in the first opportunity when get development funds. Let us dream our police behave like POLICE one day ! Be tolerent - at least during Ramzan.
Agha Ata
Aug 16, 2012 08:06pm
The BRUTAL TRUTH is that a new police should be trained and established, but during their training period no POLICEMAN from the existing police force should even be allowed to enter the training center. Not because they are bad, it is only because their mindset is absolutely UNCOMPATABLE with any force worthy to be called POLICE!