LANDI KOTAL: The Khasadar force’s personnel in Khyber region on Friday demanded of the provincial government to regularise their services and provide them with facilities like the provincial police.

The demand was made during a meeting called in Jamrud to discuss the future course of action of the Khasadar officials over fears of service termination after the merger of tribal areas with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The participants said they had no objection to the Fata-KP merger and would volunteer to become part of the regular police force.

Ask govt for service regularisation, facilities like police

Subedar Major Wali Mohammad Shalmani said Khasadar personnel feared termination from service amid reports about the formation of a new regular police force in tribal regions.

He said the Khasadar personnel had rendered huge sacrifices in the war against terrorism and for the restoration of peace in the region and therefore, they didn’t deserve to be sacked.

“It will be highly unjust if the meritorious services of the Khasadar personnel are rewarded with unceremonious termination,” said Wali Mohammad, who commands around 2,800-strong Khasadar force in Khyber region.

Khasadar official Jehangir khan said he had served the force for 26 years and had actively participated in the encounters with militants in Jamrud and Bara areas but it was unfortunate that the provincial government had planned to deprive him and his colleagues of their only source of earning through layoffs.

“I lost six members of my family in Laashorra Jamrud area when militants attacked a Khasadar and Levies convoy protecting polio teams,” he said, wondering how the government could ignore the sacrifices of the Khasadar force.

He said the Khyber Khasadar force was capable of performing all policing duties if they’re given perks and facilities equal to the members of the regular police force.

He suggested that instead of abruptly terminating their services, the government declare the Khasadar force a regular police force before regularising the services of its personnel and providing them with weapons and other facilities.

Khasadar official Safirullah Shinwari of Landi Kotal complained that the ban on the collection of the Agency Development Fund had adversely affected the Khasadar force as it was in no position to provide security to visiting polio vaccinators and government officials in the region.

He said the service termination would cause serious financial problems for the Khasadar personnel and their families.

Published in Dawn, June 23rd, 2018

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