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RAWALPINDI: Local police are unable to communicate with the administration of the Karot Hydropower Project in Kahuta regarding security measures for foreign nationals and the installations.

A senior police official told Dawn an intelligence report had suggested providing Chinese translators to aid communication between the local police and the administration of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project in the Kahuta tehsil, so that they can adopt standard operating procedures (SOP) to ensure the security of foreign nationals working on the project.

According to the intelligence agency, a survey carried out earlier this month found that hundreds of foreigners, most of them Chinese, have been working at 12 development projects – including the new Islamabad airport – in the Rawalpindi division.

Intelligence agency’s survey finds security for projects in Rawalpindi district ‘inadequate’

Of the 12 projects, six are in the Rawalpindi district, four in Attock, and one each in Jhelum and Chakwal. The foreign nationals are from China, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, United States and Korea.

The agency’s report also found loopholes in the security arrangements at the site of a power project in Ranial Kohala, Chakri, in the limits of the Sadar Barooni police, where 22 Chinese nationals are working.

The report said a barrier had not been erected at the entry gate and security staff were not using bottom-view mirrors. There also were not enough observation posts or security guards.

The agency suggested increasing the number of observation posts and guards, and erecting a barrier at the entry gate.

Security at Heavy Industries Taxila, however, was deemed “satisfactory”. There, security is covered by the army and its intelligence wing and police are not deployed.

There are over 600 Chinese experts working at Karot, and the project site is guarded by army, Rangers, Special Protection Unit and district police personnel.

Security lapses include the lack of a walk-through gate, the use of energy saving light bulbs in searchlights and the lack of police guards for Chinese engineers when moving to and from the site.

Local workers employed at the project did not receive security clearance, and night vision CCTV cameras have not been installed at the project site.

The agency recommended the provision of a translator, security clearance for local workers and police guards to accompany those travelling to and from the site.

Loopholes were also found in the security at an oil well in a village in Jatli, where a number of foreign experts work. There are no CCTV cameras at the site, and the sole walk-through gate has not been operational since it developed faults.

The site lacks night patrols by security or police officials and the residence for police and security guards is located outside the project site.

The report suggested deploying a full section of Elite Force personnel instead of three constables and one head constable, and the installation of a walk-through gate and a barrier at the entry point.

Security guards must be deployed at hilltops and night police patrols should be started as well. Increasing the number of police personnel deployed at the oil well has also been suggested.

Intelligence agency field staff found insufficient security personnel compared to foreigners residing within the airport premises. They also found that the number of CCTV cameras and searchlights were insufficient, and CCTV cameras and searchlights stopped functioning during a power shutdown, which was declared a high security risk.

The agency suggested using an electric generator to power the cameras and lights, as well as increasing the number of posts of security guards around the residence of foreign experts.

There are over a hundred foreign nationals from the US, UK, Germany and Korea working at the site of the new airport, which is spread over 26,313 kanals.

Although the survey report expressed satisfaction with existing security arrangements but also suggested measures to strengthen security further in the wake of the security situation in the country.

Published in Dawn, July 17th, 2017

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