PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government said on Tuesday that it would need 56,000 more police officers to prepare for the forthcoming provincial assembly elections.
An official statement released during a high-level conference on the law-and-order situation about the approaching electoral exercise further claimed that 1,500 Frontier Corps members would be required for the security of party leaders during election campaigns.
Chief Secretary Imdadullah Bosal, Inspector General of Police Akhtar Hayat Khan, Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Amjad Ali Khan, Home and Tribal Affairs Secretary Khushal Khan, and other senior police officials were present. The meeting was presided over by Caretaker Chief Minister Mohammad Azam Khan.
The chief minister was briefed by officials on several facets of the overall security situation surrounding the province’s approaching elections.
They said that simultaneous polls would be placed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s combined and settled districts for the first time, but the strength of the police force on hand was not enough to ensure election security.
Governor must be informed about the peace and order situation by CM
The officials stated that extra security procedures will be needed for the polls in the area due to the “law and order dynamics” of tribal districts.
They claimed that more than 56,000 additional police officers would be needed by the province government for election security, and 1,500 members of the Frontier Corps would be needed to protect political figures during election campaigns.
The caretaker chief minister will tell the provincial government about the state of law and order, according to the officials, based on a presentation made at the meeting and recommendations from the law-enforcement agencies.
Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf filed a petition with the Peshawar High Court on Monday asking for a date for the provincial assembly elections. The appeal was heard by a bench of Justice Ishtiaq Ibrahim and Syed Arshad Ali.
Nevertheless, provincial attorney general Amir Javed informed the bench in a notification that Chief Minister Mohammad Azam Khan would preside over a meeting on Tuesday to address the security situation in the province.
He requested that the hearing be put off until the conclusion of that meeting. In light of the conclusions of that meeting, the bench will restart the hearing on the petition.
During the hearing, Judge Ishtiaq Ibrahim made the observation that the security services and other pertinent ministries had a duty to work with the Pakistani Election Commission to hold free and fair elections for the provincial assembly.
The Election Commission of Pakistan had suggested to the Governor of KP Haji Ghulam Ali on January 25 that the elections for the provincial parliament be held between April 9 and 17.
The governor requested the interim chief minister’s assessment of the security situation surrounding the staging of the provincial assembly elections in a letter to him on February 5 in response to the ECP’s communication.
According to the governor’s letter, “You [chief minister] are requested to assess the security situation in the province of KP and determine whether the provincial government, in light of the current situation, is in a position to provide adequate security for the peaceful conduct of the provincial assembly general elections.”
On February 10, the governor reminded the chief minister to provide an early evaluation of the security situation in the province. Both letters, nevertheless, have not yet received a response.