KARACHI: Safe city programme despite its ‘soft launch’ is still a distant dream for Karachiites, as the traditionally lazy bureaucrats of Sindh are least concerned about bringing modern technology-based changes to the megacity, said Pasban Democratic Party (PDP) Chairman Altaf Shakoor here Sunday.

He said that the contract signing ceremony of the Integrated C5ISR-based Safe City Project was launched in the past but since then there is a complete silence about this much awaited project.

Nobody knows about the timeline of this C5ISR- command, control, communication, computer, cyber security, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance - program for the megacity.

He said there is dire need to introduce artificial intelligence in policing and security matters of our urban centres like Karachi.

He said modern technology would lessen the burden on police and improve security and safety of citizens. He said the government should learn from the success of China regarding the integration of artificial intelligence in policing and security matters of urban centres.

He said the basic point to make Karachi a safe city would be purging the local police from ‘political interference’. He said dozens of police officers in Sindh are alleged to be appointed purely on political basis, bypassing merits and Sindh Public Service Commission rules.

He regretted that presently the megacity is in the grip of crime and one reason for this is that some city police officers, themselves, are involved in crimes and robberies. Recently, a DSP Umair Bijari, allegedly a blue-eyed political appointee of the previous PPP Sindh government, was arrested red-handed while robbing a house in Orangi Karachi.

It is alleged that previous chief minister of Sindh Murad Ali Shah was involved in political appointment of this officer, who belongs to Bajari tribe of Janghara-Bajara village Sehwan, the political constituency of previous chief minister of Sindh.

Altaf Shakoor demanded that the higher forum should probe if this appointment was really made on political grounds, and if so the said accused and other such police officer recruited in Sindh police directly on political grounds, without SPSC recommendations, should be sacked and those involved in their appointments should be disqualified for any public office in future.

He said with the help of a safe city program we can make Karachi a modern livable city. He said the issues like traffic mess and encroachments could be easily resolved with the help of artificial intelligence and modern surveillance cameras.

He said the lawlessness in Karachi is an issue pertaining to the national security, as the megacity is the engine of the national economy and crime here would directly affect the national security, which is closely linked to economy.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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