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RAWALPINDI: In a bid to ensure availability of sugar and control its price, the provincial government has decided to launch a crackdown on hoarders and black marketeers and directed the police to provide assistance to the departments concerned.

According to sources, following the government’s decision, the inspector general of police (IGP) directed the police across the province to provide all-out support and assistance to the departments concerned for action against such elements.

The IGP also directed all divisional police chiefs, city police officers and district police officers to visit the fruit and vegetable auction sites twice a week instead of every day.

The visits should be kept secret, unannounced and random so that the situation in the market could be observed and prices checked.

Furthermore, the authorities have been directed to take photos of the visits and share them after the visit with the government designated portals.

Following the directives, the police and district administration officials have been visiting markets and conducting raids in Ramazan bazaars and open markets.

However, despite efforts by the district administration to keep check on prices of fruits and vegetables during Ramazan, people have been facing problems in buying quality vegetables, fruits and other items at prices fixed by the market committees.

On the other hand, senior police officers are also visiting Ramazan bazaars to check security measures and directing the police to be on alert in the existing security situation.

A police spokesman said Superintendent of Police (SP0 Saddar circle Rai Mazhar Iqbal on Monday visited Ramazan Bazaar at Adiala Road and reviewed the security there.

The shoppers on the occasion complained about the low quality of fruits and vegetables in the bazaar.

The SP directed the police to keep an eye on suspicious people.

He also directed the police to conduct search of all individuals entering the bazaar.

On the other hand, SP Potohar Dost Mohammad visited Ramazan Bazaar in Gulzar-i-Quaid and RA Bazaar to check security measures.

The SP along with police contingents conducted a search operation in and around Gracy Lane.

Published in Dawn, May 14th, 2019