LAHORE: The Lahore police authorities on Saturday released to the media the photograph of a woman drug peddler.

According to the first information report registered under section 9 (c) of the Control of Narcotic Substances Act of 1997, the police arrested the suspect, of Mohalla Islam Khan of Bhatti Gate, on Aaibak Road in the Bhatti Gate area and seized 1,100-gram drug from her. Every day, more than two dozen such cases are lodged in the provincial capital.

According to police circles, releasing the photograph of a suspect to the media is an unethical practice and violation of her fundamental rights even before initiating an investigation into the case.The FIR has the usual story where complainant sub-inspector Mohammad Anwar says a source alerted the area police that the suspect with drugs in a shopping bag was standing somewhere along the road. A police team held her and seized from her 1,100-gram charas and Rs950. The police dispatched 55 gram from the seized drug to the lab for forensic analysis.

The witnesses in the criminal case are police constables.

Independent observers say that arresting ‘trivial drug peddlers’ by the police has been a conventional practice to show performance and get certificates.Requesting anonymity, he said, under the rules and regulations, the police are bound to take photographs of a suspect for record only.

Another police officer said that according to the practice in the police department police’s performance was measured by allocating good and bad points.

The department awards officials with CCI, CCII, and CCIII certificates as per the scale of the performance of the police officials. They are awarded CC1 or CCII for detecting heinous crimes.

The CC-I is usually awarded by an additional IG, CC-II by a DIG and others by either SSP or SP.

These certificates help police personnel get promotions or perks.

Published in Dawn, February 7th, 2021

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