FAISALABAD: More than 200 traffic wardens may face action for not achieving the challan targets set for each of them by a senior traffic police officer.

Civil Lines circle lady DSP Naseem Akhtar issued a direction to her subordinates asking each warden to book a minimum of 10 people daily.

The circle has more than 200 traffic wardens who perform duties in two shifts at various important points where thousands of people commute daily.

In a letter, the DSP directed the wardens to issue challan tickets to 10 people daily while the wardens having motorcycles have been given the target of 15 challans daily. She asked the heads to submit challan reports daily and those failing to achieve the target would face the music.

Sources said a similar direction was passed a couple of years ago and the wardens were threatened with imposition of fines in case of failing to achieve the challan targets. They said instead of instilling confidence in the educated wardens to help them improve traffic regulations, the police officials were exposing them to public ire and tarnishing the image of the department.

Wardens say they are already doing a difficult job and the task of issuing challans to motorists is an additional burden. They say the higher-ups remain silent for a few days to avoid the media scrutiny but once the matter goes out of notice, they again force them to achieve the challan targets.

They say the poor drivers of rickshaws, motorcycle-rickshaws and motorcyclists are the prime target of the campaign and others go scot-free.

A warden cited the example of a recent incident in which a colleague had to face the wrath of a ruling party MPA for stopping his acquaintance for driving motorcycle without helmet and not having documents. The warden had issued him a challan ticket and impounded his bike, he said, adding that police registered a case against the warden to press him for reconciliation with the other party.

The wardens say those who failed to meet their targets in the past had to face cut in wages.

Chief Traffic Officer Asif Zafar said explanation had been sought from the DSP who had been asked to immediately cancel the order.

He said the DSP had issued the order on her own as no direction had been issued from the CTO office.

“Normally circle officers take an initiative to improve the traffic affairs but they are supposed to seek permission of the CTO,” he said.

Published in Dawn, May 29th, 2019