50pc of Kasur cops tested for drug use found ‘positive’

Published June 23, 2021
— Photo courtesy Punjab police Facebook/File
— Photo courtesy Punjab police Facebook/File

KASUR: As many as 24 out of 48 policemen selected for drug test in the district were found “positive” on Tuesday.

The drug tests of police officials are being conducted on the orders of the prime minister to bring reforms in the police department.

The Punjab inspector general of police (IGP) has issued directives to conduct the drug test of officials ranging from constables to the Police Service of Pakistan (PSP) officers.

Samples of 48 officials, including constables and assistant sub-inspectors (ASIs), were collected in the district a couple of days back for the drug test. Interestingly, no policeman above the ASI rank was listed for the drug test.

According to the district police, the officials were selected for the drug test on the basis of internal intelligence reports.

DPO says only experts can verify lab reports

The district police got the samples tested from a private lab, instead of any public hospital’s laboratory.

Explaining the choice, District Police Officer Imran Kishwar said that private lab was more reliable as compared to those of public sector hospitals. As per sources, a majority of the policemen found using drugs were constables.

A police official, requesting anonymity, said the process of drug test was similar to that used for declaring common suspects as addicts during the course of investigation at the police station level.

He said as most of the policemen start using drugs when they get these free of cost, so a strict system of check and balance should be in place at ‘malkhana’ level, where drugs recovered from criminals were stored before being produced in the court for conviction of the suspects.

One of the policemen declared an addict after the test, seeking anonymity, demanded that officials in the higher ranks should also be picked for the test to implement the IGP’s order in letter and spirit.

The DPO, however, said that being found positive in the test did not mean that an official was actually a drug addict. He said a person taking prescribed sleeping pill would also test positive in the drug test, adding that only an expert could verify the lab investigations.

Published in Dawn, June 23rd, 2021

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