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When protectors become muggers

August 02, 2016

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SAHIWAL: Citizens got hold of two constables, thrashed them and then handed them over to police for extorting money and snatching a motorcycle from a man on Jhaal Road near Chungi 81/5-R on Monday.

Both men in plainclothes introduced themselves as traffic wardens to commuters, but later they turned out to be constables of Fatehsher police station.

They were not on official duty and were simply extorting money from commuters.

DSP Ziaul Haq told reporters that after an internal inquiry, constables Mushtaq Ahmed and Sajid Ali were suspended from service for violating police discipline. The DSP said he had submitted a report to the DPO.

The DPO office in a handout said: “Citizens have handed over the two men in plainclothes on suspicion of being police officials.”

Eyewitnesses said the two men were checking documents of cars and bikes in the guise of traffic wardens and were extorting money from those who failed to produce documents.

They stopped Muhammad Shahbaz and Muhammad Nawaz and asked for the documents, but they could not produce them. The two constables demanded money, but Shahbaz got suspicious and asked them to prove their identity.

The constables then forcibly snatched his motorcycle and asked him to get his bike after showing documents at a nearby police station.

Shahbaz told reporters that he chased the two men as he thought the two men were dacoits.

He said he raised a hue and cry to draw attention of passersby who stopped the two men. He said more people gathered when he told them that they were running after snatching his bike.

At this, the people captured both men, thrashed them and then called 15 emergency police. The enraged crowd did not believe when the two men claimed they were constables.

The crowd handed over the custody of the two men to police only when the Fatehsher SHO was called on the spot who confirmed the claim of the captured men.

Published in Dawn, August 2nd, 2016