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‘First policewomen batch kept out of passing out parade’

PESHAWAR: Policewomen belonging to the first female batch of officers, after completing their training at the Hangu Police Academy (HPA), have joined various police stations in the NWFP. The officers were sent home without being told if they would be taking part in a passing out parade, which is deemed customary for every batch of policemen. This has only served to sow seeds of unhappiness. The policewomen told this reporter that their nine-month training was as tough as the one which their male counterparts underwent. Therefore, they were surprised at not being asked to participate in the passing out parade to be held on March 20.

“The training was quite tough and hectic as our day used to begin very early, as we underwent physical training and parade and special weaponry drills. After going through such a tough routine, silence on the part of our superiors on the issue of the parade has really demoralised all of us,” said one of the graduating officers. Another officer said: “We were all very happy during the entire training but felt dejected when told to go home without a word on the passing out parade.” Attaullah Wazir, the commandant of the HPA, said the passing out parades were normally held on March 23 and the female officers who had completed their training would be participating in the next one. The NWFP chief minister was expected to be the chief guest on the occasion.

The trainees – including constables and senior rankers from Peshawar, Haripur, Abbottabad, Chitral, Swat, Dir, Karak, Swabi, Charsadda, Nowshera and Dera Ismail Khan – were trained in collecting evidence and registering the First Information Report (FIR). They were also given lectures on the Pakistan Penal Code, Criminal Procedure Code, Police Rules, Traffic Laws, Rules of Patrolling and Security Procedure for the VIPs, said a graduating officer. “We were also trained to use weapons like China rifle, semi-automatic rifles, submachine guns and to deal with mobs and protests through ‘baton charge’ and ‘rifle squad’,” said another policewoman.

The policewomen were also sent to the Sehala Training Academy, which was a bit expensive. Many could not attend the course due to various cultural constraints.
During the tenure of Riffat Pasha, the former inspector-general of police, a large portion of the HPA was reserved for the training of policewomen under the supervision of female superiors without any extra cost. There were some 200 female officers in the NWFP working at two police stations in Peshawar and Abbottabad, while the rest performed duties during raids, patrolling and for the security of the VIPs. PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Owners of private schools in Hayatabad have rejected the imposition of 3 per cent quota
in private institutions for children of employees of the City Development and Municipal Department (CD&MD). Under the banner of National Education Council, private school owners complained that the director-general of the CD&MD had been pressing private institutions to fix a quota and free education for the CD&MD employees’ children, a press release issued here on Thursday said.

Source: Dawn

Date:1/19/2007

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