PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police have booked the heads of over 450 educational institutions in the province for a lack of security on campus.

The information was shared with participants of a meeting the Peshawar police held with the principals and owners of the city’s government and privately-owned schools and colleges at the Malik Saad Police Lines here about security arrangements at their respective premises.

Representatives of around 80 educational institutions attended the meeting chaired by city police chief Mubarak Zeb. Similar meetings took place in Bannu, Charsadda and Hangu districts in the day.

Police, representatives of educational institutions discuss arrangements for protection of campuses

During the Peshawar meeting, Peshawar SSP (operations) Abbas Majeed Marat briefed participants about security requirements for educational institutions.

He said the strength of the provincial police stood at 68,000, while there were around 64,000 educational institutions across the province.

The SSP said the police and public needed to work together under the current delicate security situation.

“Schools, colleges and universities should have 14 feet boundary walls with three to four feet high barbed wires. In addition, they should also install CCTV cameras and deploy an adequate number of guards. There should also have proper lighting system and emergency alarm system on the premises,” he said.

The SSP said guards should patrol near boundary walls of smaller educational institutions, while bigger ones should arrange such patrols on motorcycles and automobiles.

He said at the start of classes, senior faculty members should check the secluded places around their premises, while the school administrations should not allow pushcart vendors to stand near or roam around campus and sought the police’s help for the purpose.

The SSP said besides having guards, the school buses should also be marked less prominently.

City police chief Mubarak Zeb said the current security situation was a huge challenge and its needs to be tackled with joint efforts of police, educational institutions and general public.

He said the security challenge could be countered with participatory security.

“Deployment of armed guards at schools is not the police’s wish. Instead, it’s the result of security compulsion as children need to get education regardless of all terrorist threats,” he said.

Mr. Zeb said Peshawar being the provincial capital was more prone to terrorist attacks.

He said all 30 SHOs of the provincial capital, 11 DSPs and three SPs had been asked to stay in the field from 7am to 3pm to monitor the security situation by themselves.

He said the city police had formed 12 mobile squads with two covering Charsadda Road, GT Road, Badbher and Ring Road, Machni Gate, Hayatabad and University of Peshawar each.

Principals and owners of the educational institutions also shared their complaints and suggestions with the police officials.

In Bannu, commissioner Kamarn Zeb and RPO Tahir Khan met school owners and administrations and directed them to take necessary steps to ensure security of students and staff members on campus. They said all educational institutions should link themselves with the SOS system.

In Charsadda, district nazim Fahd Riaz Khan held a meeting with school administrations in his office and discussed security situation of educational institutions in the aftermath of the recent Bacha Khan University Charsadda attack.

The nazim was asked to secure funds from the provincial government for the security of schools and colleges in the district in light of their unavailability.

In Hangu, officials of the district administration directed school administrations to ensure security of their premises.

They warned in case of any security lapse by them, the police would register FIRs against the administrations of the respective schools.

Officials told participants including district nazim Mufti Obaidullah, DPO Shah Nazar and deputy commissioner Nasim Khan that all schools across the district had been given Rs800,000 each for putting in place security checks but even then, most schools had neither installed CCTV cameras nor had they hired armed guards.

SCHOOL OWNERS BOOKED: The Mardan police have registered cases against owners of 62 schools over a lack of security on their respective premises.

Mardan DIG Saeed Khan Wazir told reporters here on Wednesday that soon after the Charsadda university attack, owners and administrations of educational institutions were asked to make security arrangements in and around their campuses but the instructions were not taken seriously by most.

He said he had asked the district police officers of Mardan, Sawabi, Charsadda and Nowshera to call a meeting of government and private schools to ensure appropriate security measures on campus.

In Mingora, too, the police asked the government and private schools to ensure proper security on the premises.

Published in Dawn, January 28th, 2016



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