ISLAMABAD: The recent rape incident in F-9 Park has given shudders to the capital residents who are blaming the city’s police for failing to check the rising incidents of crime. But, in its failure to prevent recurrence of such a crime in the same location, the Capital Development Authority (CDA) is also culpable.
A similar rape crime occurred in 2018 when a woman was assaulted by none other than the CDA’s own security guard. Following the incident, the civic body “flung into action”, announcing that it would install security cameras and enhance patrolling in the park to avoid such an incident in future. But, nothing materialised.
Now, the new CDA chairman, Noorul Amin Mengal, has announced similar measures and vowed to enforce the new standard operating procedures (SOPs) in letter and spirit. The CDA chairman visited the park on Monday and chaired a meeting, which took a number of decisions.He directed the civic authority to complete ongoing installations work of around 80 security cameras by Feb 20 and also approved provision of 12 new motorcycles to staffers assigned with the task of patrolling the park.
Mr Mengal also suspended two officers after cables for the security cameras were stolen from the park.
The meeting decided not to allow people from visiting the park’s forest area after sunset and that instead of one manager the city’s seven major parks would have separate managers.
“Today, I took several decisions; I own this park, which is the largest park in the city. As far as my commitments are concerned, whatever I say I mean it. Within one month’s time, the residents of Islamabad will see a visible improvement,” Mr Mengal told Dawn.
He said he had given approval of Rs100 million for installing solar panels in the park.
“Mark my words, if the SOPs are not implemented, action will be taken against the officials concerned,” he added.
The CDA’s environment wing spent millions of rupees through quotations in the said park, but it never paid heed to get the work on cameras’ installations completed on an urgent basis.
An officer of the environment wing, meanwhile, said after getting approval some months ago, they started installing cameras. “Today, we were directed to complete this work by Feb 20 and we will do it,” he added.
Published in Dawn, February 7th, 2023
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