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Jhang police initiate computerisation of cases, FIRs

Updated February 23, 2015

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— Reuters/file
— Reuters/file

LAHORE: In an attempt to switch over to complete automation of police record, Jhang police have made more than 20,000 first information reports (FIRs) filed from Jan 1, 2012 to date available online under its FIR Management Information System (FIRMIS).

Jhang is the first district in Punjab followed by Toba Tek Singh that has computerised the record of all police offices and police stations and got complainants on board through the short message service about the investigation process of their cases.

A database of more than 10,000 criminals has been created and case files of all cases are being written online to overcome mismanagement in police operations and manual record, flawed investigation and poor challan ratio under public-private partnership, which outclassed the previously introduced Police Record Office Management Information System (PROMIS) model by the federal government for computerisation of police record.

The computerisation model, which has already got the nod of the provincial police chief who has tasked his subordinates to replicate the Jhang model across the province, has recently been replicated in Toba Tek Singh district. It is designed by officers of the Jhang police.

Currently, four projects -- FIRMIS, Human Resource Management Information System (HRMIS), Complaint Management Information System (CMIS) and computerisation of different processes in the district police office -- are being implemented in Jhang district.

Officials claim at the moment its performance is better than that of PROMIS, which was introduced in 2005 but not implemented yet.

They say the chairman of Information Commission Punjab has recently written a letter to the Punjab government and appreciated the efforts of computerisation of police record by the Jhang police.

Under the project, a team of dedicated operators has been trained to update data daily. All police stations, sub-divisional police officers (SDPOs) and the district police office have been interlinked through Local Area Network (LAN) through Air-Max Wi-Fi technology.

Complete data about every officer (from a constable to deputy superintendent of police) and ministerial staff is available on the HRMIS. Toba Tek Singh is the second district to follow Jhang’s CMIS model since August 2014.

Maintenance of the software and hardware is being looked after by the district IT team. Under the integrated information system in Jhang district, computers have been provided to all district police stations and details of FIRs are being entered in the system at each police station daily. All the police stations have been linked with the district headquarters through a dedicated wireless network. The system automatically generates reports about the progress of each FIR.

The salient features of FIRMIS are that one can monitor each step of every case from its registration to the verdict.

It has reduced the workload of a moharar while automatically generating all diaries required by senior offices. The Criminal Record Office has been incorporated in the system and is part of every e-case file. Currently, Jhang police have information about more than 10,000 criminals.

A strict audit regime has been introduced to maintain the accuracy and sanctity of data. The system checks wrong entries at various steps.

Following are the problems faced by police and complainants from the stage of manual registration of a case to its verdict from a court. They are expected to be addressed by the four IT projects currently being implemented by district police.

Monitoring of cases: A breakdown of challaned cases under investigation, untraced, cancelled and incomplete/complete is generated automatically. A click on any number generates a list of cases and further clicking on a particular case generates its complete progress report. These reports are tabled under police stations, crime heads and investigating officers.

These reports provide an insight to supervisors into the operations of a police station, police sub-division or district. The process helps rectify defects in investigations, complete investigations on time and make accountability possible at all tiers.

Monitoring of case files: Cases in which interim reports are not submitted in court, case cancelation reports pending verification by the SDPO, case cancelation reports not sent to court, untraced reports not verified by the SDPO, untraced reports not sent to the court, the accused is arrested but not challaned, the accused is on bail but not challaned, the accused is sent to judicial lock-up but challan against them not submitted in court, proclaimed offenders are arrested but their challan not sent to court, no nominated accused is at large but the case is pending investigation.

Non-completion of records: The cases not assigned to any investigating officer, case property not entered in relevant registers at a police station, case property not deposited at mal khana or sent to a forensic lab, proclaimed offenders and court absconders not entered in register.

Court proceedings: The complete challan sent to court but not fixed for trial, detail of cases under trial, case cancelation reports pending hearing, untraced report pending hearing, details of accused on pre-arrest bail, pervi of cases under trial.

These details keep the police abreast of the current status of all cases sent for trial and thus proper pursuance of the cases in the court concerned.

Crime diaries: Date-wise list of cases, periodical crime figures diary, crime figures sub head diary, list of proclaimed offenders, list of court absconders, record of case properties at mal khana of police station and at headquarters.

Published in Dawn February 23rd , 2015

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