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Luggage scanners at railway stations

LAHORE: Installation of luggage-scanning machines at major railway stations has been intensified on a directive of Minister for Railway Khwaja Saad Rafique.

“Luggage of passengers at Karachi Cantt, Rohri and Rawalpindi stations is already being checked with these machines while equipment to scan baggage at Lahore will soon be operational,” said Railway Police Inspector General Munir Ahmad Chishti on Thursday.

All major railway stations would have luggage-scanning machines in phases. Under the first phase, two luggage machines each at Karachi Cantt and Rawalpindi besides one at Rohri have been installed and made operational. Installation of another two such machines at Lahore station had been completed. After completion of control room, the machines at Lahore station would also be operational, said Mr Chishti.

The railway police recently procured latest weapons from Wah Ordnance Factory, said the IG while adding that explosive detecting equipment was also bought for major railway stations.

Explosive-detecting equipment has also been procured

Meanwhile, another senior officer of railway police said security arrangements at railway installations and in trains have been intensified in the wake of the recent spate of terrorism.

Railway police officials have been directed to keep an eye on all passengers without disturbing anyone to ensure security of the installations and trains.

All entry and exit points at the PR installations were being properly manned and passengers and their luggage being checked with metal detectors at railway stations. No platform has been left unattended while PR police commandos at every major railway station have been deployed and number of plainclothesmen in the moving trains also enhanced.

Maximum number of PR police personnel had been deputed for the protection of vital railway installations, besides nearby mosques, imambargahs and shrines, withdrawing them from ‘unimportant’ duties.

Railway police were regularly patrolling within their jurisdictions while pilot engines were being run ahead of the main trains in sensitive areas to avert any untoward incident.

Proper sweeping of all the racks was being carried out at the washing lines before dispatching them to the railway stations, said the officer.

Published in Dawn, February 17th, 2017