• Tuesday, September 25, 2018

The policing system of British rule

Discussion in 'Pakistani Siasat' started by Solomon2, Mar 6, 2018.

  1. Solomon2

    Solomon2 ELITE MEMBER

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    The policing system of British rule
    By Shahbaz Tufail
    Published: March 6, 2018

    [​IMG]
    The writer is an advocacy assistant at the Sustainable Development Policy Institute


    In any society across the globe, local governments and policing are two important pillars and institutions that maintain peace and prosperity. However, in Pakistan the police force is highly politicised and often used to serve personalinterests.

    The implementation of different police orders in different parts of Pakistan has generated disparities among the police force. Although provinces have amended the Police Act, the basic police system is still based on the Police Act of 1861. We are still living with the old police system — which was in fact designed and implemented by the British Empire — to control the mob and ensure that nobody can create a problem for the government. The purpose of the Police Act of 1861 was to introduce the police as a cruel, formidable and intimidating force so that nobody could raise his or her voice against the British Empire.

    Even today the same concept is in vogue in Pakistan. Members of the force are still being used as a weapon to rule the majority. The gap between society and the police is worsening by the day. At provincial levels the force is also being used for different purposes and often as personal guards, resulting in disparities between police systems of provinces and the federal capital.



    Though different governments tried their hand at bringing in reforms, they failed due to political instability in the country. However, for implementation of reforms in any sector, including the police, we have to ensure a peaceful and stable democratic system.

    Reforming our police on modern methods and technologies is one of the greatest challenges in the country today. The Police Order 2002, which was promulgated on August 14th 2002, replaced the Police Act of 1861 in all the four provinces but it was not extended to the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), Gilgit-Baltistan or Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Based on the Police Order 2002, Punjab and K-P introduced their own police orders. Sindh initially adopted the same but later on, in 2011, it reverted to the Police Act of 1861, and the ICT and Fata also have the same old act in place with some minor changes.

    As a result, our police service is now in a state of fragmentation, an example of which is the lack of coordination between the ICT and Punjab police evident during the recent Faizabad sit-in. Until and unless we move towards a uniformed police law, we may not get out of this quagmire. Weak prosecution and poor investigation by the police contribute to this sorry state of affairs. Hence, the police need to play a proactive and leadership role in the current circumstances.

    Moreover, police reforms cannot be effectively implemented unless we do not reform our criminal investigation system. The lack of political will, resources and monetary support, external interferences and resistance from the bureaucracy are major hurdles in the way of effectively implementing the Police Order 2002.

    Our police have become a force for intimidating people, rather than a public-friendly service. We have yet to change the one-and-a-half-century-old police system. This system is not compatible with the modern-day needs. In fact, the Police Order 2002 is an excellent document which will ensure that the police force will serve as a role model for society.

    Along with the implantation of a uniformed police system at provincial and federal levels, interaction and coordination between the police and citizens is the need of the hour at the community level — a goal to be aspired for.

    An advanced and friendly police system is indeed important for any country. In developed countries, the police force always works as a public servant of society. That is the main reason why law enforcers are considered important and respectable members of society.

    Developed countries all over the world have realised the importance of the efficient role of the police to maintain peace and they have developed their police system according to the demands and requirements of their own countries.

    Published in The Express Tribune, March 6th, 2018.

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  2. Indus Pakistan

    Indus Pakistan PDF THINK TANK: CONSULTANT

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    Rubbish article. Any piece that begins by blaming everything on the British is just a excuse for cop out. Good or bad it was the British who even introduced the concept of 'police'. We did not even have a police or such word before that. The local warlord was god, the judge, the excecutioner. Period.
     
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  3. Starlord

    Starlord SENIOR MEMBER

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    bloody colonizers ..
     
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  4. Wolfhunter

    Wolfhunter FULL MEMBER

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    What an absolute tragedy that a major broadsheet newspaper of Pakistan has published this nonsense. My great great grandfather was a Police Inspector and later Commissioner in British India and Decca. The Colonial police was designed on the principals set up by Sir Robert Peel in 1829.

    The police force was designed as a 'policing by consent in model" in South Asia the model was changed because of Agitation in the empire from Kerela though to Khyber Pass, but the principals, laws and rules of operation remained the same.

    To blame the British for the challenges faced by Pakistani police is a nonsense.

    Here is my counter to this article:

    I am a passenger in a car that is stationary at a Red Traffic light on a busy intersection of Islamabad. Across the road in the din of the urban jungle in the sweltering heat I can see two police officers attending to a road traffic accident, one stops the traffic whilst the other is busy trying to help the driver of the crashed vehicle who appears to be seriously injured.

    The vehicles all waiting at the busy intersection honk their horns and drivers open their windows and gesture aggressively toward the police officer, all seem oblivious to the tragedy unfolding in front of them.

    It is at times like this that you witness the true selfish nature of people boil and rise to the surface to present its unsightly visage. I have often sat and silently witnessed people go about their daily business, like a stranger standing at the periphery looking in.

    And I think to myself, when was the last time we said thank you to those who protect us? Those who would risk their own lives for the safety and security of complete strangers. According to a report published in the Dawn 145 security personnel were killed in terrorism incidents in the year 2017.

    In our busy and hectic modern lives, these stalwart protectors become invisible to us and so too does the level of risk they are exposed to. A police officer must be many things at once. The police officer is of all people at times the most needed, the most wanted and yet the most hated.

    At times the police officer is addressed as Sir and at other times s/he is the focused target of violence, intimidation and every expletive you can imagine. The trust deficit between the public and police is a growing gulf, exacerbated by the public image, personal interactions and lack of community outreach.

    Historically be it Pakistan or elsewhere, we have witnessed underscored incidents of dishonesty and brutality, poor judgement and excessive force, because that is news. But just beneath the surface, beyond all the “bad-press” and “bad -eggs” what do we fail to see?

    We fail to see the father or mother, kiss their children before going on duty, we fail to see the constable standing in rain or shine sometimes for more than 8 to 10 hours with over 31 lbs of equipment strapped to their person, exposed to a threat level that would make most Hollywood super cops quake in their boots.

    Crucified in public for both action and restraint, exposed to the best and the worst in our society. Police officers are by the very nature of their profession and oath open to a high level of public scrutiny and accountability, we should not forget the human stories behind the badge.

    Per a report published by the Pakistan Institute of Peace Studies, 221 police officers paid the ultimate price whilst carrying out their duties in the year 2016. Regardless of the job description, no one should have to wake up exposed to the constant threat that they may or may not see their family again for a basic salary just shy of rupees 25,000.

    I am not advocating that the Pakistanis give the people who uphold the law a blank cheque when it comes to use of force or law and order, neither can one overlook our present malaise when it comes to endless roadblocks, check posts and spot checks.

    We the public are at the best of times not privy to the means and methods in which security agencies obtain information, we are immune to the many threats faced by our men and women in uniform because someone decided to wake up, put on a uniform and man that check post without any expectation of public appreciation.

    I don’t claim to know if check-posts and random searches are the best tactic to prevent crime and terrorism, but I do hope that this blog article makes you the reader think “the next time I am stopped at a check post by a constable and asked for ID, I am going to shake their hands and thank them for their service.”

    For all those men and women who are the thin blue line between order and chaos, between law and lawlessness, thank you.
     
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  5. Valar.

    Valar. FULL MEMBER

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    Evil Empire.
     
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  6. Zibago

    Zibago ELITE MEMBER

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    Why woukd any province change the police if it means decreased influence?