Friday, September 5, 2008

Reforming Pakistan's Police ICG Report

Asia Report N°157 – 14 July 2008
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATIONS................................................. i
I. INTRODUCTION .......................................................................................................... 1
II. BACKGROUND............................................................................................................. 2
A. COLONIAL EXPERIENCE ............................................................................................................2
B. STRUCTURE AND ORGANISATION..............................................................................................2
C. POLICING PAKISTANI STYLE (1947-2001).................................................................................3
1. The police under military rule ............................................................................................3
2. Reforms under Zulfikar Ali Bhutto ....................................................................................4
3. The Zia years ......................................................................................................................4
4. The police under Benazir Bhutto and Sharif ......................................................................5
III. MUSHARRAF’S POLICE REFORMS ....................................................................... 6
A. POLICE ORDER 2002.................................................................................................................6
B. AMENDMENTS ..........................................................................................................................7
1. Appointments, transfers and evaluations............................................................................7
2. Public safety commissions..................................................................................................8
IV. REFORM OR REGRESSION? .................................................................................... 9
A. DYSFUNCTIONAL REFORM........................................................................................................9
B. SEPARATION OF POWERS ........................................................................................................10
C. OPPONENTS OF REFORM .........................................................................................................10
V. UNREFORMED POLICE........................................................................................... 12
A. POLITICISING THE POLICE .......................................................................................................12
B. CORRUPTION..........................................................................................................................13
VI. COUNTERING EXTREMISM................................................................................... 14
VII. REFORMING THE POLICE ..................................................................................... 17
A. INTERNAL SECURITY...............................................................................................................17
B. POLICE MODERNISATION ........................................................................................................18
1. Salaries and resource allocation........................................................................................19
2. Community policing .........................................................................................................19
3. Female policing ................................................................................................................20
C. MOVING FORWARD.................................................................................................................21
VIII.CONCLUSION ............................................................................................................. 22
A. MAP OF PAKISTAN ..................................................................................................................23
B. ABOUT THE INTERNATIONAL CRISIS GROUP ...........................................................................24
C. CRISIS GROUP REPORTS AND BRIEFINGS ON ASIA...................................................................25
D. CRISIS GROUP BOARD OF TRUSTEES.......................................................................................28
Asia Report N°157 14 July 2008

After decades of misuse and neglect, Pakistan’s police
force is incapable of combating crime, upholding
the law or protecting citizens and the state
against militant violence. With an elected government
taking over power after more than eight years
of military rule, the importance of reforming this
dysfunctional force has assumed new importance.
Elected representatives will be held accountable if
citizens continue to see the police, the public face
of government, as brutal and corrupt. The democratic
transition could also falter if deteriorating security
gives the military a new opportunity to intervene,
using, as it has in the past, the pretext of
national security to justify derailing the democratic
process on the grounds of good governance. Major
reforms and reallocation of resources are required
to create an effective and accountable police service.
President Pervez Musharraf claimed national security
and the need to strengthen democracy justified
his 1999 coup. Police reform was to form a part of
the military government’s devolution scheme, the
centrepiece of Musharraf’s ostensible reform agenda.
He replaced the colonial-era legislation, the Police
Act of 1861, which had governed the functioning of
the police since independence, with the Police Order
2002. Devised after consulting senior serving
and retired police officers, that order, if properly
implemented, could have been an important step
towards reforming a dysfunctional organisation.
Yet, like other pledges of good governance made
by Musharraf and his military-led government, police
reform was sacrificed for political expediency.
Amendments to the Police Order have watered
down provisions that held some promise of reform,
including mechanisms for civilian accountability
and internal discipline, as well as guarantees for
autonomy and safeguards against political interference
in the posting, transfer and promotion of police
officials. Six years after the Police Order was
promulgated, very few public safety commissions,
supposedly the cornerstone of the accountability
process, were even established, and those that existed
lacked enforcement mechanisms. The police
remained a political pawn, with transfers and promotions
used to reward those willing to follow orders,
no matter how illegal, and to punish the few
professional officers who dared to challenge their
military masters.
The new civilian government has inherited a police
force with a well-deserved reputation for corruption,
high-handedness and abuse of human rights, which
served the military well for over eight years, suppressing
Musharraf’s civilian opposition and more
than willing to accept any task – from extrajudicial
killings and torture to rigging elections. With public
confidence in the police at an all-time low, reform
will be difficult and require time, patience and
resources, yet it is a task the new governments at
the centre and in the provinces will ignore at their
peril, as militant violence reaches new heights.
The police and civilian intelligence agencies are far
more appropriate for counter-insurgency and counterterrorism
operations than a military trained to combat
external enemies. The police and the intelligence
agencies under police control must be given
the resources needed to tackle internal threats and
crime. The international community, particularly
the U.S. and the European Union (EU), should realise
that helping the police and civilian intelligence
agencies with training and technical assistance
would pay counter-terrorism dividends. However,
the Pakistan government should not just increase
financial support and police numbers but also enact
tangible organisational and political reforms. Political
appointments must end; postings, transfers,
recruitment and promotions must be made on merit
alone; the recommendations of police managerial
bodies must be given due weight, and emphasis
placed on the police serving and protecting citizens.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page ii
Above all, democratically elected rulers must resist
the temptation to use the police for political, partisan
ends. While they are under no compulsion to
retain the Police Order, they must ensure that its
replacement is not merely a change of name. They
must realise that security of their constituents and
their own governments will be best ensured by a
police force that is professionally run, well trained,
adequately paid and operationally autonomous. If it
is still used for political ends, the police force may
well be damaged beyond repair, at great cost to the
peace in Pakistan.
To the Government of Pakistan:
1. Give the police and their affiliated intelligence
organisations primary responsibility for internal
security and greater capacity to do the job by:
(a) increasing the numerical strength of the police;
(b) promoting specialisation, particularly in the
areas of forensic science and cyber crimes;
(c) strengthening the counter-terrorism wings of
the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and
the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and making the
IB the country’s premier intelligence agency;
(d) abolishing the political wing of the Inter-
Services Intelligence Directorate (ISI) and
removing it from military control; and
(e) withdrawing the Pakistan Rangers and other
paramilitary organisations from internal security
functions, replacing them by the police.
2. Rebuild morale, reduce corruption and increase
efficiency by:
(a) removing corrupt, inefficient or politically
biased officers from senior positions and positions
of authority over the police;
(b) increasing salaries, particularly of those at
the bottom of the hierarchy;
(c) allocating more funds for improving facilities
and securing the welfare of police rank
and file and their families, and ensuring that
increased allocations are spent on better
housing and transport facilities for the rank
and file, rather than the well-being of senior
officers; and
(d) providing meaningful pensions to the families
of police officers killed in the line of duty
and publicly recognising acts of bravery.
3. Settle, in the long-term, the legal status of the Police
Order by:
(a) placing the order before the national parliament
for detailed debate and review;
(b) establishing a parliamentary subcommittee to
examine provisions in greater detail and provide
(c) sending the order to the provinces for further
debate, review and recommendations;
(d) seeking the feedback of serving and retired
police officials, as well as informed members
of civil society; and
(e) evolving a national consensus on how to make
the police a disciplined, efficient, modern, nonpartisan,
service-oriented and transparent institution
and framing statutory legislation
based on that consensus, instead of indefinitely
extending a presidential ordinance.
4. Undertake, as an immediate first step, to make
the police more accountable by:
(a) setting up a parliamentary subcommittee on
policing under the National Assembly’s
Standing Committee on the Interior;
(b) empowering the public safety commissions
meaningfully by devising stringent enforcement
mechanisms for police accountability;
(c) making the selection of independent members
of the commissions completely transparent;
(d) maintaining parity between government and
opposition members on the commissions; and
(e) separating police complaints authorities from
public safety commissions, thus enabling
them to perform their distinct roles.
5. Protect the police from political manipulation by:
(a) making the appointment of senior police officials
subject to the recommendation of the
relevant public safety commission;
(b) mandating the approval of the relevant public
safety commission for premature transfers
of senior police officials; and
(c) withdrawing the power of the district chief
nazim (mayor) to write the district police officer’s
annual performance evaluation report.
6. Improve police performance and redress public
grievances by:
(a) empowering managerial bodies like the National
Public Safety Commission, the National
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page iii
Police Management Board and federal and
provincial police complaints authorities;
(b) facilitating the implementation of genuine
community policing through Citizen Police
Liaison Committees consisting of representatives
of civil society, including academics,
lawyers and human rights activists, with
meaningful female representation; and
(c) appointing an independent police ombudsman
to investigate serious cases of police
abuse, including custodial deaths and sexual
offences against female prisoners.
7. Ensure greater female presence in the police by:
(a) increasing the number of female police stations
and cells for women detainees in regular
police stations; and
(b) authorising women police officers to register
and investigate cases and improving their
standards of training.
8. End military interference in police affairs by:
(a) abolishing the military’s 10 per cent reserved
quota of positions in the police;
(b) removing serving and retired military personnel
from police positions, including in the
police-run intelligence agencies such as the
Intelligence Bureau (IB); and
(c) replacing the National Accountability Bureau
(NAB) with the Federal Investigation
Agency (FIA) as the primary anti-corruption
To the International Community, particularly
the U.S. and the European Union:
9. Increase security-related assistance to and
strengthen counter-terrorism capabilities of the
police and civilian security organisations, including
by equipping forensic laboratories – both existing
ones and new ones that should be established
– and assisting the computerisation of
police records.
10. Institute and expand professional development
programs for police officers.
11. Assist curriculum reform, and help modernise police
training, with an emphasis on community policing
techniques and procedures.
Islamabad/Brussels, 14 July 2008
Asia Report N°157 14 July 2007
Promulgating the Police Order, a presidential ordinance
that formed part of his scheme to restructure
local government, President Pervez Musharraf pledged
to transform Pakistan’s ill-disciplined, politicised and
violence-prone police into an efficient, apolitical and
service-oriented force.1 Six years after the order was
passed into law in 2002, the police remain inefficient,
corrupt and brutal. While law and order has rapidly
deteriorated, police excesses and crimes have sharply
risen. In 2007 alone, the independent Human Rights
Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) recorded 147 cases
of police torture and 65 deaths in custody.2
Until the Police Order was introduced, the Police Act
of 1861, a colonial legal instrument designed primarily
to keep imperial India’s subjects under check, determined
Pakistan’s police structures, administration
and functioning. In 2002, many police officials, well
aware of the faults of their organisation, had believed
that the Police Order would indeed transform the
force into a modern and disciplined body, which
would serve and protect citizens.3 Six years after its
promulgation, however, the Police Order remains a
presidential ordinance, since Musharraf’s parliament
was either unwilling or unable to pass it into law. Absent
parliamentary sanction, the scheme lacked credibility,
hampering implementation. In any case,
Musharraf massively amended the Police Order in
2004, undoing the proposed reforms before they had
been put in practice.
As originally devised, the Police Order would have
ensured civilian oversight and accountability. It also
guaranteed the autonomy the police needed to main-
1 For a detailed analysis of Musharraf’s local government
scheme, see Crisis Group Asia Report N°77, Devolution in
Pakistan: Reform or Regression?, 22 March 2004; and Crisis
Group Asia Briefing N°43, Pakistan’s Local Polls: Shoring
up Military Rule, 22 November 2005.
2 “HRCP terms 2007 as worst year in Pak history”, The Nation,
31 March 2008.
3 Crisis Group interviews, Islamabad and Lahore, November-
December 2007.
tain the peace and combat crime. Amendments diluted
that autonomy and weakened mechanisms for civilian
oversight and internal accountability. Deeply disappointed,
many professional officers now believe that
“the objectives behind the Police Order have not been
achieved for the simple reason that the military regime
never sincerely wanted to reform the police; for
all intents and purposes, the old system remains in
place with minor changes”.4
As one officer put it, “so long as the ruler of the day
treats the police as his personal militia, the police can
never be reformed”.5 This was certainly true of the
military-led government. Following Musharraf’s 1999
coup, the regime used the force for political ends. In
2007, Musharraf relied primarily on the police to
crush political dissent, as he faced the most serious
challenge to his power in the aftermath of the sacking
of the chief justice of the Supreme Court. The police
were once again the military-led government’s coercive
instrument of choice after the promulgation of
martial law in November. In the run-up to national
elections in February 2008 and on election day, too, the
regime used the police against its political opponents.
While Musharraf relied on the police to counter political
opposition, his government deprived the force
of adequate resources – administrative, technical and
fiscal. After almost a decade of neglect, it is not surprising
that the police have proved incapable of maintaining
internal security. Considered a soft target by
extremists of every hue, scores of poorly equipped
personnel have been killed in terror attacks, deeply
demoralising the force.
This report, based on extensive interviews with current
and retired police officers, analyses the existing
system of policing, identifying flaws and proposing
tangible ways of reform under the new civilian dispensation.
It examines police functioning and service
conditions and assesses the force’s ability and potential
to maintain law and order, counter growing extremist
violence and eliminate terrorist threats to the
state, to Pakistan’s neighbourhood and beyond.
4 Crisis Group interviews, Lahore, December 2007.
5 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, May 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 2
In 1947, independent Pakistan had inherited a colonial
system of policing. Devised in the aftermath of the
Mutiny of 1857,6 an anti-colonial uprising, to deter
future revolts, imperial India’s rulers introduced the
Police Act of 1861 by which the police’s main function
was to coerce, rather than protect, citizens. Law
and order was to be maintained at any cost. The police
had another function, the collection of land revenue.
Both tasks were assigned to a single British civil
service official in each district of every Indian province.
Variously known as the collector, district officer,
deputy commissioner and district magistrate,7 that official
presided over all criminal cases in his district.
According to a senior Pakistani police official, this
“illogical concentration of powers in one individual
resulted in the realisation of revenue by torture and led
to the commission of untold atrocities”.8 Because locals
could not be trusted, the British district magistrate
controlled and supervised the district police.
Police functioning was also marred by dual controls
over the force. Under the 1861 Police Act, an inspector
general of police (IG) was the highest-ranking police
officer in a province. Appointed by the central
government, he advised the provincial government on
all matters relating to police administration and the
maintenance of law and order.9 At the district level, a
superintendent of police (SP) was responsible for
matters relating to the management of the force and
the performance of all functions, including the detection,
investigation and prevention of crime.
At the district level, the local police functioned under
the IG’s administrative, financial, organisational,
professional and technical command, while under the
district magistrate’s operational control. In some provinces,
the district magistrate directed police operations
at the district level, his subordinate, the assistant commissioner,
at the sub-divisional level, and his supe-
6 In India and Pakistan, the Mutiny is known as the War of
7 For the purposes of the Police Act of 1861, the terms deputy
commissioner and district magistrate could be used interchangeably.
8 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, December 2007.
9 Muhammad Shoaib Suddle, “Reforming Pakistan Police:
An Overview”, 120th International Senior Seminar on “Effective
Administration of the Police and the Prosecution in
Criminal Justice”, in “Annual Report 2001”, United Nations
Asia and Far East Institute for the Prevention of Crime, p. 97.
rior, the commissioner, at the divisional level. As a
result, the police became, for all practical purposes,
the coercive arm of the civil bureaucracy, with the IG
and his deputies prevented “from supervising the
force not only with respect to its capacity to maintain
law and order” but also denied “autonomy in the
realm of internal administration”.10
There have been no radical changes in the organisation
of the police or the mechanisms through which
they are governed since the founding of the country.
Under the 1973 constitution, criminal law and procedure
are included in the concurrent list – subjects that
fall under the jurisdiction of the centre and the provinces,
with the centre’s legislation taking precedence
over provincial law. Islamabad is only responsible for
law and order in the Federally Administered Tribal
Areas (FATA) and the Federally Administered Northern
Areas. The federal government, however, controls
a host of specialised police agencies. These include
the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), the Railway
Police, the National Highways and Motorway Police,
the Frontier Constabulary and the Islamabad Capital
Police. The Intelligence Bureau (IB), the main civilian
intelligence agency, also falls under the police
service and reports directly to the prime minister.
Basic law and order responsibilities in the four federal
units11 are vested in their provincial governments. The
police forces in the provinces act independently of
each other, and there is no nationwide integration.
However, the federal interior ministry exercises overall
supervision. Senior police positions are filled from
the ranks of the Police Service of Pakistan (PSP)
cadre, a career service from which officers can be stationed
in any part of the country or in agencies or
ministries of the federal government. Recruitment to
it is through an annual nationwide examination held
by the Federal Public Services Commission from
which other federal civil services, including the District
Management Group (DMG), Customs and Excise
and Income Tax, as well as the Foreign Service are
recruited.12 Members of the PSP are recruited as assistant
superintendents of police (ASPs), following
which they receive two years of training and serve for
one year in the Frontier Constabulary before entering
10 Ibid, p. 98.
11 Pakistan has four federal units: Balochistan, Northwest
Frontier Province (NWFP), Sindh and Punjab.
12 An annual quota of 10 per cent of positions in the civil services
is reserved for serving military officers, who do not
have to take the civil service examination.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 3
one of the four provincial police forces or the Islamabad
Capital Police.
Under the Police Act of 1861, an inspector general
(IG) heads the police hierarchy in a province with
deputy inspectors general (DIGs) and additional inspectors
general (AIGs) serving directly under him.
These subordinate officers supervise police functioning
within a clearly demarcated part of the province
previously known as a “range” but which, under the
Police Order, is now termed a “general police area”.13
The primary thrust of policing in a province is at the
district level. A superintendent of police (SP) heads
the force in districts, with a senior superintendent of
police (SSP) leading larger districts and provincial
capitals. At the sub-district level, assistant superintendents
of police (ASPs) and deputy superintendents
of police (DSPs) command the police. DSPs are not
recruited from the PSP cadre. Promoted instead from
the junior ranks of the provincial police, they are
meant to be stationed in their respective provinces for
the duration of their service.
The overwhelming majority of police personnel belong
to these junior ranks, which under the Police Order
comprise personnel of and below inspector level.
These include, in order of seniority, sub-inspectors,
assistant sub-inspectors, head constables and constables.
The junior ranks are not members of the PSP
cadre but are recruited by the provincial governments
and based at police stations.14
Under the Police Order, the designations of police positions,
particularly of the officer cadre, have been
changed. 15 The IG is now known as the provincial police
officer (PPO). Each provincial capital has a capital
city police officer (CCPO), recruited from officers
at least of additional inspector general rank. In addition,
each city district has a city police officer (CPO),
recruited from officers at least of deputy inspector
general rank. Each region has a regional police officer
(RCO). A district police officer (DCO), who is recruited
from officers at least of senior superintendent
of police rank, heads the force at the district level. At
the lower levels of the hierarchy, the old names have
been retained.
13 Police Order 2002, Article 2 (ix).
14 Ayesha Siddiqa, Military Inc.: Inside Pakistan’s Military
Economy (Karachi, 2007), p. 59.
15 The Police Order changed the designations of various police
positions, but the old ones are still commonly used.
For all the shortcomings of the Police Act of 1861,
the British gave their Pakistani successors a tried and
tested system of civil and criminal justice. Although
that system was primarily designed to protect colonial
interests, it nevertheless ensured, in large measure,
law and order and a functioning criminal justice system.
Pakistan retained the Police Act, but under
power-hungry bureaucrats and inept rulers, both civilian
and military, the criminal justice system in general
and the judiciary and the police in particular went into
decline, serving neither the state nor the citizen.
1. The police under military rule
In Pakistan’s first decade of independence, the
country was nominally a parliamentary democracy,
but civil bureaucrats ruled the state with the military
as junior partner, using the police primarily to
suppress dissent and to retain control.16 This use of
the police as a coercive instrument became even
more widespread when Army Chief General
Mohammad Ayub Khan imposed martial law in
October 1958, dispensing with the pretence of democracy.
Devising a scheme of local government
called Basic Democracy, aimed at creating a clientele
at the local level, Ayub used the police to suppress
political dissent and to marginalise opposition
Ayub’s government sacked a large number of police
officers of proven integrity and competence.
According to a senior police officer who served
under the regime, “corrupt and unprincipled officers
were rewarded and honest ones sidelined”.18
As opposition to military rule grew, between November
1968 and March 1969, hundreds of protestors
in Pakistan’s west wing were killed in clashes
with the police. In the east wing, the military’s
forcible suppression of civilian dissent following
general elections in December 1970 until Pakistan’s
defeat in the 1971 war with India, which resulted
in Bangladesh’s creation, produced hundreds
of thousands of deaths.19
16 See Crisis Group Asia Report N°40, Pakistan: Transition
to Democracy?, 3 October 2007.
17 See Crisis Group Asia Reports N°102, Authoritarianism
and Political Party Reform in Pakistan, 28 September 2005;
and Devolution in Pakistan, op. cit.
18 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008.
19 Pakistan then had two units, West and East Pakistan. According
to Bangladeshi authorities, the Pakistani military
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 4
2. Reforms under Zulfikar Ali Bhutto
After Ayub’s successor, General Yahya Khan (1969-
1971), presided over the loss of East Pakistan, a demoralised
military was forced to transfer power to
Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, whose Pakistan Peoples Party
(PPP) had gained a majority of the seats in West
Pakistan in the 1970 elections. Soon after forming a
government, Bhutto embarked on a nation-building
endeavour, adopting a consensus constitution that
created a parliamentary form of government and attempted
to place the military under civilian control.
To strengthen the elected government’s control over
the powerful civil bureaucracy, Bhutto also launched
administrative reforms that were to alter its structure
and functioning.
In 1972, Bhutto terminated the services of 1,300 civil
and police officials on the grounds of corruption and
incompetence. While some analysts believe that many
officers were penalised on flimsy grounds,20 others
are of the view that the elected government was justified
in asserting control over a bureaucracy that had
colluded with military autocrats since independence.21
However, this reformist agenda was taken to the extreme.
By withdrawing constitutionally guaranteed
protections of employment and against political interference
in 1973, Bhutto dealt a serious blow to the
professionalism of the police and other parts of the
civil service. The executive could now dismiss even
the most senior civil and police officials by merely
issuing them a “show-cause notice”. “Government
employees had hitherto considered themselves servants
of the state, but with the removal of constitutional
guarantees, they were turned overnight into servants
of the government and of Bhutto’s Pakistan
Peoples Party”, said a former IG.22
Until Pakistan’s first elected government took over
office under Bhutto, civil bureaucrats had, in fact, resisted
political control, opting instead first to control
the state on their own, then to operate as junior partners
with the military. That said, the removal of guarantees
of employment and conditions of service cerkilled
three million civilians in the east wing; more conservative
estimates put the figure for civilian deaths at the military’s
hands at around 300,000. Lionel Baixas, “Thematic
Chronology Index: Thematic Chronology of Mass Violence
in Pakistan, 1947-2007”, Online Encyclopaedia of Mass
Violence, at
20 Anwar H. Syed, The Discourse and Politics of Zulfikar Ali
Bhutto (London, 1992), p. 135.
21 See Hamid Yusuf, Pakistan: A Study of Political Developments
1947-1999 (Lahore, 1999), p. 146.
22 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008.
tainly made the police more vulnerable to political
Bhutto’s recruitment policies further politicised the
police force. The elite Central CSP (Civil Service
of Pakistan) cadre was abolished, and through a
system called “Lateral Entry” 5,000 officials of
various ranks and grades were directly recruited
into the police and other services, in some cases on
merit but more often for political reasons.23 A large
number of DSPs were directly recruited into the
police, bypassing the Federal Public Service Commission’s
civil services examination.24 Lacking adequate
training and given rapid out-of-turn promotions,
these new recruits undermined efficiency and
demoralised those less politically connected.
Bhutto’s disregard for democratic functioning and
unwillingness to accommodate dissent politicised
the police further when he used the force against
his opponents. According to a former IG, the Federal
Security Force (FSF), a security agency created
by Bhutto, included “some of the worst elements of
the other law-enforcement agencies and was accountable
only to the prime minister”.25 While the
decision to set up the FSF was motivated by the desire
to reduce the government’s dependence on the
military during times of civil unrest,26 FSF personnel
were “frequently used, at times in plain clothes,
to disrupt the political gatherings of opposition political
parties”.27 As the prime minister lost popular
support, an ambitious military high command was
given an opportunity to oust him.
3. The Zia years
On 5 July 1977, Army Chief General Mohammad
Zia-ul-Haq imposed martial law, justifying the ouster
of the elected government on the grounds of national
security and democratic reform. His intentions, however,
became clear when he detained Bhutto and other
opposition politicians. The military government
forcibly repressed political opposition and sought to
achieve legitimacy through the use of religion, embarking
on a process of “Islamising” the polity. Religious
parties were empowered, and their ranks ex-
23 Yusuf, op. cit., p. 153.
24 Crisis Group interviews, two retired inspectors general,
Islamabad and Lahore, December 2007-January 2008.
25 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008.
26 Ayesha Jalal, Democracy and Authoritarianism in South
Asia: A Comparative and Historical Perspective (Lahore,
1995), p. 82.
27 Ibid.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 5
panded as the madrasa (religious school) sector flourished
under military patronage. The military’s active
support for Islamists, local and Afghan, during the
anti-Soviet jihad in Afghanistan also increased the political
strength of extremists.28
“The military’s involvement in Afghanistan [had such
a] far reaching impact [on] the state of law and order
and violent crime that we are paying the price to this
day”, said a former police officer who had served as
an IG under Zia’s government.29 The easy access to
arms for and from Afghanistan, for instance, promoted
sectarian and ethnic violence and crime in
Pakistan, while the proceeds of the Afghan drug trade
penetrated and criminalised the economy and politics.
Instead of ensuring that the police could tackle the
new challenges to internal security, the regime starved
them of resources. Used mainly to repress political
opposition,30 the poorly paid and inadequately trained
force was further demoralised when the military penetrated
its ranks. Unlike Ayub’s military rule, when the
civil bureaucracy was co-opted and a willing partner,
Zia not only made it subservient to his government’s
dictates, but also appointed military officers to important
positions in the federal and provincial administrations,
including the police and civilian intelligence
4. The police under Benazir Bhutto and Sharif
In the flawed democratic transition of the 1990s that
followed Zia’s death in 1988, successive elected governments
were dismissed by the military, using the
president as proxy, before they completed their terms
of office. Nor did the two main political players,
Benazir Bhutto’s PPP and Nawaz Sharif’s Pakistan
Muslim League (PML-N) help to consolidate democracy,
as they entered into untenable alliances with the
military to gain or to retain power.31
Bent on undermining each other, their governments
politicised the police further. Although Bhutto did attempt
to reform police procedures and capabilities
with regard to gender-related violence, PPP govern-
28 For more on Zia’s Islamisation, see Crisis Group Asia Reports
N°36, Pakistan: Madrasas, Extremism and the Military,
29 July 2002; N°49, Pakistan: The Mullahs and the
Military, 20 March 2003; and N°95, The State of Sectarianism
in Pakistan, 18 April 2005.
29 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, December 2007.
30 This included publicly lashing political dissidents, including
31 Crisis Group Report, Pakistan: Transition to Democracy?,
op. cit., pp. 9-10.
ments also made large-scale appointments at the assistant
sub-inspector level on political grounds, particularly
in Bhutto’s home province of Sindh. PML-N
governments followed suit in Punjab, Sharif’s home
province.32 Political considerations also determined
postings and transfers, particularly at the higher levels.
At the operational level, too, police officials were
too often diverted from their primary duty of maintaining
law and order to carrying out the commands
of their political masters.33
32 Crisis Group interviews, serving and retired police officials,
Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi, December 2007-
January 2008.
33 Some police officers claimed that senior postings in Punjab
during Nawaz Sharif’s second tenure were determined by the
willingness of officers to eliminate hardened criminals in extrajudicial
killings, called police “encounters” in local parlance.
Crisis Group interviews, Islamabad and Lahore, December
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 6
When Pakistan gained independence, the Police Act
should have at the very least been amended, if not
completely repealed. Instead, it was retained for more
than five decades because it was politically expedient.
Several reform commissions were constituted, but not
a single constructive recommendation, for example
for greater autonomy or depoliticisation, was accepted.
By the late 1990s, public confidence in an unreformed,
corrupt and inefficient police was at an alltime
low. According to a senior police officer, complaints
ranged from “routine discourtesy and incidents
of neglect, incompetence and arbitrariness to institutionalised
abuse of power and widespread resort to
In October 1999, President Musharraf ousted Nawaz
Sharif’s government and imposed military rule. Attempting
to legitimise his coup on the grounds of democratic
reform, he quickly seized upon a scheme for
political devolution. The military government claimed
that the scheme would transfer power to the local levels
of government. In practice, the scheme proved little
more than a cover for centralising military control
through the creation of a new local political elite,
which was then used to marginalise the regime’s political
Within a month of his coup, Musharraf set up a National
Reconstruction Bureau (NRB). Its local government
scheme established elected councils at the
sub-district and district levels; nazims (mayors) were
placed at the apex of district government. The scheme
also abolished the posts of deputy commissioner and
assistant commissioner, which had traditionally controlled
executive, judicial and revenue functions in a
district, and established a new administrative structure
led by a district coordination officer (DCO). Magisterial
and legal powers, previously exercised by the
deputy commissioner, were transferred to the district
and sessions judge and police oversight powers to the
nazim.36 Thus, while the police force’s longstanding
demand for ending the supervisory control of the deputy
commissioner was accepted, that control was
vested not in an impartial supervisory body or the police’s
own senior leadership but in the nazims, the
military’s new local clientele.
34 Suddle, op. cit., p. 101.
35 Crisis Group Report, Devolution in Pakistan, op. cit.
36 Ibid.
The NRB included police reform in its good governance
and devolution plans. In 2000, it established a
think tank composed of senior serving and retired police
officers, which deliberated for over a year before
presenting recommendations that were formally incorporated
into a presidential ordinance promulgated
as Police Order 2002. The Police Act of 1861 ceased
to operate as soon as the Police Order came into
force. Although policing is constitutionally a provincial
subject and can be legislated by each province as
it deems fit, the order, a federally-created legal instrument,
was extended to the four provinces.37 Because
it was devised by a military regime, it lacked
legitimacy. Even a member of Musharraf’s ruling
Pakistan Muslim League – Quaid-i-Azam (PML-Q) –
criticised the centrally devised scheme, saying that the
order was “virtually thrust down the throats of the
provinces”, and “the whole devolution plan, including
the police reforms, was designed only to create an alternative
political power base for Musharraf”.38
Despite such misgivings about Musharraf’s intentions,
many police officers were willing to give the
military regime the benefit of the doubt. Most maintain
that the order was not deliberately designed to
undermine provincial autonomy but to reorganise the
police into an efficient professional and politically
neutral force.39 “Whatever Musharraf’s motivations
might have been, the fact remains that he did do away
with a thoroughly antiquated system of policing and
replaced it with one that, although by no means perfect,
theoretically constituted an improvement over its
predecessor”, said a senior police official. “The only
flaw is that Musharraf was never sincere about implementing
The Police Order was promulgated with the proclaimed
objectives of making the police publicly
accountable, operationally neutral, functionally specialised,
professionally efficient, democratically controlled
and responsive to the needs of the community.
37 According to media reports, the NRB overruled more than
350 objections made by the provincial governments and federal
ministers. See “Setup to enjoy trust of people: Musharraf:
Police Order 2002 okayed”, Dawn, 8 August 2002.
38 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, February 2008.
39 Crisis Group interviews, Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi,
December 2007-January 2008.
40 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, February 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 7
It emphasised that the reformed police would serve
and protect citizens.41
Emulating the Japanese National Safety Commission
system, it called for the establishment of oversight
bodies with both elected and nominated members at
district, provincial and national levels. An independent
prosecution service would be created to place additional
checks on the police. Public accountability
would be ensured through the safety commissions as
well as police complaints authorities at the provincial
and federal levels. Effective liaison with the public
would be facilitated through the establishment of
Citizen Police Liaison Committees (CPLCs). The involvement
of women in policy and oversight bodies
like the safety commissions was to be encouraged.
The criminal justice administration would be made
more efficient through the establishment of Criminal
Justice Coordination Committees at the district level.
Operational neutrality would be guaranteed by ensuring
autonomy in administration and investigation.
Separating operational duties from investigation, the
order also proposed to organise the police on functional
lines into various branches and divisions, including
investigation, intelligence, watch and ward,42
reserve police, police accountability, personnel management,
education and training, finance and internal
audit, crime prevention, crimes against women, traffic
management, criminal identification, information
technology, transport, research and development, legal
affairs, welfare and estate management. The postings
of officers to any of these specialist branches and
divisions were made subject to the necessary training
and relevant experience.43
Reflecting a long rivalry between the Police Service
of Pakistan and the DMG, a police officer said that a
“self-professedly elite cabal had historically controlled
district administration until it was displaced
from its lofty perch” by Musharraf’s local govern-
41 Articles 3, 4 and 5 dealt exclusively with attitudes, duties
and responsibilities of the police towards the public. Article
114 prescribed a code of conduct for law enforcement officers
to regulate police practices. It was the police force’s
duty to promote amity, behave toward the public with due
decorum and courtesy, preserve and promote public peace
and obey and promptly execute all lawful orders.
42 The term “watch and ward” refers to surveillance at key
locations and guard duties.
43 Police Order, Article 7.
ment system.44 “Members of the DMG opposed the
draft Police Order tooth and nail because they simply
could not bear the prospect of not being able to lord it
over the police, as they had been doing for six decades”,
said another who was closely involved in framing
the order.45
The order also encountered stiff opposition from
Musharraf’s PML-Q leadership who, said a senior police
officer, “feared losing their leverage over the police
to harass political opponents”.46 Lacking popular
support and wanting to use the police to retain their
tenuous grip on political power, PML-Q federal and
provincial ministers and legislators strongly fought
the order. According to a former IG, their primary concern
was not so much a diminution of provincial autonomy
but rather the threat that the “undiluted administrative
control of the provincial police officer over his
force” would deny them opportunities to determine
“posting and transfers on the basis of political considerations”.
47Although their very survival was based on
the patronage of the military-controlled central government,
PML-Q provincial ministers became champions
of provincial autonomy. Stressing that policing
was a provincial subject, they insisted their concerns
about certain aspects of the order would have to be
addressed before they could allow its implementation.
1. Appointments, transfers and evaluations
Egged on by his supporters and “never really having
the best interests of the police at heart”, according to a
police officer,48 Musharraf introduced amendments to
the order in November 2004. Most police officers believe
these amendments fundamentally undermined
the order’s intent and spirit. Under the original order,
for instance, the provincial government would appoint
the provincial police officer from a panel of three officers.
The federal government would provide the list of
names, with recommendations from the National Public
Safety Commission (NPSC). Under the amended
order, the NPSC has no role in recommending names,
reducing the chances of appointments made on merit.
Similarly, under the original order, the provincial
government could not prematurely transfer (ie, before
the expiry of a fixed, three-year tenure) the provincial
44 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008. The DMG
had controlled the office of the district commissioner, abolished
by the devolution plan. For more, see Crisis Group
Report, Devolution in Pakistan, op. cit.
45 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, December 2007.
46 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, December 2007.
47 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, December 2007.
48 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, December 2007.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 8
police officer or the capital city police officer without
the agreement of the Provincial Public Safety Commission
(PPSC) and the Capital City Public Safety
Commission (CCPSC). Under the amended order, the
provincial government no longer required the approval
of these oversight bodies. It could prematurely
recall the provincial police officer with only the federal
government’s consent. Police officials believe
this change has made them “vulnerable to the hostility
[of the provincial chief minister] in case they refuse to
accept his unlawful commands”.49
The amended order also allows the federal government
to prematurely recall the provincial police officer
at its own discretion without prior approval from
the NPSC, removing a vital check on its authority. In
the original order, the PPSC could initiate a case for
premature transfer of a provincial police officer or
capital city police officer for unsatisfactory performance
of duties. Now the PPSC can only make a nonbinding
recommendation. The provincial police officer,
who previously could appoint a city police officer
or district police officer in “consultation” with the
government, now requires the express approval of the
provincial government or, more accurately, of the
chief minister.
Under the original order, the city police officer and
the district police officer could only be transferred before
the completion of their three-year terms on
clearly specified grounds, and then only with the concurrence
of the district nazim and District Public
Safety Commission (DPSC). Moreover, such transfers
could be made only after the concerned officer had
been personally heard by the DPSC. The nazim and
the DPSC’s agreement are no longer required in the
amended version; nor is the concerned officer given a
chance to have his voice heard.
Provincial governments now have the authority to
transfer officials prematurely on grounds that include
“exigency of service” and “misconduct and inefficiency”,
terms that are vague enough to be open to
misuse. “We still have no security of tenure”, said a
district police officer posted in Punjab. “Only those
who are loyal to the chief minister have any chance of
serving out their three-year tenure; the rest would be
lucky to last three months in one place”.50 Another
controversial amendment concerns the authority given
to the district nazim to write the district police officer’s
annual performance evaluation report, which has
a direct bearing on promotion prospects. The original
order gave the nazim no such power.
49 Crisis Group interviews, Lahore, January 2008.
50 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, March 2008.
Due to these amendments, police officers are now dependent
for postings, transfers and continuation in office
on their provincial chief minister and, as far as
district police officers are concerned, on the nazim for
promotion. “How can one expect the police to be impartial
and unbiased when it is subjected every day to
untold political pressures from all sides?” asked an
officer in Islamabad. “Most police officers feel that,
in order to secure their career prospects, they have no
choice but to do the bidding of their political masters.
Any defiance on their part could, and often does,
wreck their careers”.51
2. Public safety commissions
As a result of the 2004 amendments, the public safety
commissions have been almost completely eviscerated.
Musharraf’s government had, in any case, set up
very few of these oversight bodies, and fewer still are
fully functional. Under the original order, half the
District Public Safety Committee (DPSC) was elected
by the district councillors from among their own
members; the rest were independent members appointed
by the provincial governor from a list recommended
by a district selection panel. As a result of the
amendments, the provincial government now appoints
one third of DPSC members from federal and provincial
legislators in that district; one third are appointed
as independent members by the government from a
list provided by the district selection panel; and one
third are elected by the district council from its own
members. “What was the need to include politicians
in the administration of bodies intended to be nonpartisan?
It is simply another way of perpetuating political
interference in the functioning of the police”,
said an officer.52
Changes were also made to the structure of the Provincial
Public Safety Commission (PPSC). Originally,
it consisted of twelve members and an ex-officio
chairman (the provincial home minister). Half the
members were to be appointed by the speaker from
the provincial legislature and three each from government
and opposition benches after consultation
with the leader of the house and the leader of the opposition.
The provincial governor would appoint the
other six members from a list provided by a provincial
selection panel. The speaker is now authorised to
nominate four members – two government and two
opposition provincial legislators – thus tilting the balance
in favour of the ruling party and making the
51 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, January 2008.
52 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, December 2007.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 9
PPSC, an ostensibly neutral body, vulnerable to interference
by the provincial executive.
The decision to merge police complaints authorities
with public safety commissions at the provincial and
district levels was another ill-advised change. These
are distinct bodies with separate ambits and functions.
“This needless merger of public oversight of the police
with public redress of grievances against the police
has created serious problems, especially when a
majority of members of the public safety commissions
belong to the party in power”, said one senior
police officer.53 “Thanks to this merger, the underlying
objectives behind the safety commissions and the
complaints authorities have remained unfulfilled;
these existing bodies are neither one nor the other”,
added a former IG.54
53 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, December 2007.
54 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, December 2007.
Although the Police Order has yet to be passed by
parliament, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan
commented that it is one of the most “frequently
and most comprehensively amended” legal instruments
in Pakistan’s recent history.55 It has been reissued on at
least eight occasions since the November 2004 amendments
and must now be taken up by the parliament
that has come into being after the February 2008 national
elections. “A select committee of the previous
parliament was expressly constituted to examine the
amendments after they came under heavy criticism
from both the police as well as civil society”, said a
senior police official in Lahore. “It presented its recommendations
to the speaker, but the latter just sat on
them, as did the [Musharraf] government, and the order
just kept on being reissued with the amendments
firmly in place”.56
Some of the institutions envisaged in the reforms, particularly
oversight bodies like the safety commissions,
have yet to be established; others that have been constituted
have not been allowed to function properly.
“District safety commissions are still being put in
place”, said a senior police officer in Lahore. He
added: “The pace at which this is happening is miserably
slow; in any case, the commissions have no
funds and no real powers, and as a consequence, neither
the police nor the government listens to them”.57
A police officer in Karachi said, “the commissions
might be there on paper, but the old system is still in
place everywhere, be it districts or provincial capitals”.
58 Most officers also believe that the NPSC, the
primary national oversight body for the police, has
been kept deliberately weak and not allowed to exercise
its powers.
Even if the safety commissions were to be constituted
as envisaged, questions would remain about their effectiveness.
The Police Order gives them nebulous
and poorly defined powers to approve policing plans
and encourage public-police cooperation. A commission
can only ask the district police officer to remedy
police complaints. It possesses no independent en-
55 “State of Human Rights in 2006”, Human Rights Commission
of Pakistan, annual report, Lahore, January 2006, p. 31.
56 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, November 2007.
57 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, December 2007.
58 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, December 2007.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 10
forcement mechanisms or powers of inspection. The
federally-appointed provincial governor selects half
the commission’s members. More importantly, the
governor can remove members “on his own volition”
on several grounds, including “involvement in activities
prejudicial to the ideology, interest, security,
unity, solidarity, peace and integrity of Pakistan”,
terms often used to justify arbitrary removal.59
The Police Order called for the establishment of a National
Police Management Board (NPMB) comprising
provincial heads of police and federal law enforcement
agencies to perform a range of functions, including
identifying and arranging research into the areas
of criminology, terrorism, sectarian and ethnic violence
and drug trafficking. While it has been constituted,
the NPMB has “barely held a session or two
thus far and those, too, were devoted to mouthing
platitudes about the need to improve policing; no concrete
recommendations about anything of any significance
were made”, a senior police officer asserted.60
Police circles are also critical of the separation of operational
duties from investigation. Prior to the Police
Order, the station house officer (SHO), who has the
rank of inspector and presides over all activities
within a police station, was in charge of both functions.
To register a case, a complainant would request
the SHO to file a “first information report” (FIR). The
inspector and his team would then investigate on the
basis of the information contained in the FIR. The
SHO’s powers with regard to investigation have now
been transferred to a separate investigations wing,
headed at the level of the police station by an inspector.
The wing has its own hierarchy in every province,
with an additional inspector general at its apex.
Many officers believe this separation of operational
and investigation duties is ill advised. It is even more
difficult for the public to have cases registered and to
keep track of investigations. A complainant must now
have a case registered by the SHO and then have it
investigated by the investigations wing. “It is often
the case that while the SHO is based in the police station,
the investigations wing might be at a different
location, and complainants have to move from one
place to another, usually at considerable personal inconvenience”,
said an inspector in Lahore. “And even
if the station house officer and the investigations wing
are in the same police station, a complainant must
59 Crisis Group Report, Devolution in Pakistan, op. cit.
60 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, November 2007.
deal with more officials than before, leading to increased
visits to the station, more delays and blockages
and greater extortion of bribes by a larger pool of
Police officers also believe that taking away the powers
of investigation from the SHO has undermined the
chain of command within a police station. “Musharraf
always justified the retention of his army uniform on
the ground that it allowed him to maintain unity of
command”, said a senior police officer in Lahore,
“but when it comes to letting the police maintain its
unity of command, he obviously feels differently”.62
As a result of the separation of operational and investigation
duties and the creation of separate hierarchies
for each, the lines of authority are blurred, resulting in
considerable confusion within police and public alike.
According to the amended Police Order, the head of
investigation in a district is responsible to his own
hierarchy but subject to “the general control” of the
district police officer. The inspector in charge of investigations
in a police station is also subject to the
“general control” of the SHO but remains answerable
to his own hierarchy. Since the order does not define
the term “general control”, this has resulted, said a
former IG, to a “ridiculous state of affairs where the
district police officer controls the supply of funds to
the head of investigations in his district and writes his
annual performance evaluation report but is supposed
to have no say in the way the officer conducts his
Some in the force believe the Police Order is opposed
by those officers who “simply want to enjoy their new
powers without being subjected to stringent accountability”
and are thus hindering implementation.64 According
to a former officer involved in the preparation
of the order, the NRB prepared three volumes of draft
rules for the police to ensure complete implementation
and circulated them to the provincial police officers
to incorporate changes. “For over four years now,
those draft rules have been gathering dust in the offices
of the provincial police officers. Their inaction
regarding the promulgation of the rules is one of the
61 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, November 2007.
62 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, December 2007.
63 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, November 2007.
64 Crisis Group interview, retired police officer involved in
framing of the Police Order, Islamabad, November 2007.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 11
main factors militating against full implementation of
the Police Order”.65
The provincial police officer must prepare an annual
policing plan that states targets and objectives. This
plan is submitted to the PPSC for approval. The PPSC
can amend, alter or send the draft back to the provincial
police officer for further review. “To date, not a
single provincial police officer in any of the provinces
has presented any such plan”, said a former IG.66
Other officers insist that the DMG cadre is hampering
implementation because the collapse of the reforms
would resurrect its own fortunes and restore “its most
prized former possession, the office of the deputy
commissioner”.67 They point out that amendments to
the original order have circumscribed the provincial
police officer’s autonomy by making him “subject to
the policy, oversight and guidance [of] the chief minister
through the chief secretary and the provincial
home secretary”. The chief secretary and provincial
home secretary are almost always chosen from the
DMG cadre.68
In 2007, police officials also attributed much of the
blame for the failed reform to Musharraf’s PML-Q
allies. “They simply could not accept the increased
checks on their power, which is why they inserted
amendments to make the police their handmaiden
once again”, said an officer.69 Officers were particularly
critical of the issuance by PML-Q chief ministers
and other influential politicians of illegal orders
for postings and transfers in the form of directives to
the provincial police officer and his subordinates.
This practice, said a police official in Lahore, “has resulted
in massive political interference, lack of tenure
for officers and a steady erosion of good management
and professionalism”.70
The reasons behind Musharraf’s dysfunctional police
reforms, however, are no different from those of his
other proposed reforms: a lack of credibility, legitimacy,
sincerity and political will. “The army would
never want the police to become a disciplined, competent
and professionally run organisation for fear
that it would shatter the myth of the army being the
65 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, December 2007.
66 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, November 2007.
67 Crisis Group interview, retired inspector general, Islamabad,
January 2008.
68 The chief secretary is the most senior civil servant in a
69 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, March 2008.
70 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, December 2007.
only such uniformed body in the country”, insisted a
police officer.71 Another said:
Musharraf has paid plenty of lip service to the
cause of police neutrality but in reality, he and his
political cronies have manipulated it just as cynically,
if not more so, as any of his predecessors.
Musharraf has destroyed the police just like he has
destroyed every other institution of any importance
in this country. Had these reforms been sincerely
implemented, the image of the police might
have been different, but thanks to these amendments,
the police is perhaps even more loathed and
feared by the public today than it was before it was
71 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, May 2008.
72 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 12
Presiding over a cabinet meeting in August 2002 in
which formal approval was given to the Police Order,
Musharraf expressed his conviction that it would
transform the police from a “repressive entity to an
accountable and responsive setup” which would enjoy
the confidence and trust of the government and the
people.73 In 2007, Musharraf’s prime minister, Shaukat
Aziz, addressing police officers, stressed that “the
police, as the cutting edge of the legal system, must
ensure protection of the socially weak, guard against
discrimination and demonstrate good conduct and fair
play in dealing with all citizens, rich and poor
alike”.74 A police officer present on that occasion remarked:
“The truth is that Musharraf and his political
allies have treated the police like their personal bodyguard
and have used it against the public in order to
fulfil their selfish aims, foremost amongst those being
their own perpetuation in power and the exclusion
from power of their rivals”.75
According to police officials, the Police Order has
brought about no meaningful change in the way in
which the force functions and therefore no corresponding
change in the apprehension and outright hatred
with which the vast majority of citizens view it.
The public is certainly justified in perceiving the police
as brutal and corrupt. Since 2002, after the order
came into being, the independent Human Rights
Commission of Pakistan’s annual reports have highlighted
widespread and increasing instances of illegal
detentions, deaths in custody, police torture, extrajudicial
killings and pervasive corruption.
The military-led government used the police repeatedly
to crush political dissent countrywide. In the fading
days of the regime, during the protests that followed
Musharraf’s attempt to remove Chief Justice
Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry in July 2007, the police
brutally attacked demonstrators. Even the chief
justice was manhandled.76
73 “Setup to enjoy trust of people: Musharraf: Police Order
okayed”, Dawn, 8 August 2002.
74 “PM says country facing security challenges: Police asked
to gear up”, Associated Press of Pakistan, 7 November 2007.
75 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, January 2008.
76 See Crisis Group Asia Briefing N°70, Winding Back Martial
Law in Pakistan, 12 November 2007.
On 12 May 2007, pro-government supporters, reportedly
activists of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement
(MQM), then Musharraf’s coalition partner in the
Sindh government, attacked lawyers and opposition
political party workers in Karachi, killing 42 workers
from the PPP and the Awami National Party (ANP)
and injuring more than 150. The MQM’s Waseem
Akhtar, an adviser to the Sindh government on home
affairs, conceded that the police had been ordered to
remain unarmed and hence unable to act against the
perpetrators; police officers confirmed that when they
reported for duty on 12 May, they were asked by their
superiors to surrender their weapons.77 In the aftermath
of the carnage, the police failed to apprehend,
let alone disarm, those responsible for the violence.
On 3 November 2007, Musharraf imposed martial
law, suspending the constitution, removing Chief Justice
Chaudhry as well as other judges who refused to
accept the legitimacy of his actions.78 Unlike previous
periods of martial law, the military did not rely on
troops to impose control. Instead the police were
tasked with silencing opposition. As police brutality
against pro-democracy protestors reached new
heights, the force lost whatever credibility it had left
in the eyes of citizens.
In the run-up to national elections in February 2008,
the military-led regime relied primarily on the police
and intelligence agencies to harass political opponents
and rig the polls. In many districts, for instance, district
police officers arrested opposition workers on false
charges, and opposition rallies were broken up.79 A
police officer in the Intelligence Bureau (IB) disclosed
that the government had asked the IB “to shortlist prospective
candidates in each district, check them out
completely and then recommend the most suitable.
This is not something that falls within the purview of
the Bureau; it is an inherently political function that inevitably
compromises our professionalism”.80
Even the Election Commission of Pakistan, not known
for its independence, was forced to take “serious notice
of the large-scale postings/transfers of police officers
in the province of Sindh after issuance of the
election schedule, despite the ban imposed by the
77 Massoud Ansari, “The day Karachi bled”, Newsline, June
2007, p. 40.
78 See Crisis Group Crisis Alert, “Pakistan: Emergency Rule
or Return to Democracy”, 6 June 2007; and Crisis Group
Asia Report Nº137, Elections, Democracy and Stability in
Pakistan, 31 July 2007.
79 Crisis Group observations, Sindh and Punjab, January-
February 2008.
80 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, November 2007.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 13
Election Commission in that regard”.81 In Punjab, too,
the government relied on the police to do its biding,
rehiring handpicked retired police officers and transferring
and posting officers at will.
Police corruption has certainly not declined since the
Police Order’s promulgation. Transparency International’s
“Global Corruption Barometer 2007” called
the police the most corrupt public sector agency in
In 2002, the military government formed a threemember
committee, headed by an additional secretary
of the interior ministry, to find ways of tackling police
corruption.83 It was given a list of 4,000 officers
suspected of corrupt practices but no action was
taken. In 2006, the Punjab government’s “Anti-
Corruption Establishment” report warned that police
corruption was “very high”, ranging from bribes to
registering false cases and dropping charges against
criminals.84 This warning, however, was not accompanied
by remedial action.
Police officers agree that there is widespread corruption,
from petty bribery at the lower rungs of the hierarchy
to more substantial graft at the top. In an attempt
to justify their force’s shortcomings, they
blame the government for failing to take action and
also for not addressing its own shortcomings. “How
can corruption in the police go down when people
known to be corrupt are made its bosses?” asked an
officer. “Many in the police, particularly those at the
bottom of the pile, feel that when those at the top are
making money right, left and centre, what incentive is
there for them to remain clean?”85 This is certainly no
justification, but those at the top of the police hierarchy
must understand that police professionalism and
efficiency and the force’s public image are badly tarnished
by such practices.
81 Qaiser Zulfiqar, “Provinces ordered to reverse reshuffling”,
The Nation, 13 January 2008.
82 On a scale from one to five with one meaning not at all
corrupt and five meaning extremely corrupt, Transparency
International gave the police in Pakistan a rating of 4.3.
83 “Committee to review police corruption”, Daily Times, 19
July 2002.
84 Aayan Ali, “Police and Revenue departments most corrupt,
says ACE”, Daily Times, 4 April 2006. According to the report,
illegal detentions were frequent, and the system of investigations
and technical skills of police officials woefully
85 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, March 2008.
The military government must also share some of the
blame, not just for failing to punish corrupt police officials
but also for undermining the police’s capacity
to eliminate such practices. In 1999, for instance,
Musharraf set up the National Accountability Bureau
(NAB), an anti-corruption watchdog. In 2004, the
NAB took over the Federal Investigation Agency’s
(FIA) anti-corruption and crime wings and was also
authorised to handle cases of fraud, corruption and
other irregularities committed by government servants,
responsibilities previously exercised by the
FIA.86 An FIA official noted that while NAB usurped
many of the FIA’s anti-corruption powers, it failed to
“do much to actually curtail corruption”.87
The NAB is seen as an extension of the military; more
than 17 per cent of staff consists of serving and retired
military officers, many of whom occupy key positions.
Until recently a serving general headed the
agency.88 During eight years of military rule, it was
mainly used to target the regime’s political opponents,
while it turned a blind eye to the corrupt practices of
ruling party ministers and supporters. “Had the FIA
been depoliticised and given complete operational
autonomy, it would have delivered the goods”, said a
senior police officer working in that organisation. “Instead,
the military establishment opted to have an
agency that would facilitate their witch-hunts of selected
politicians and civil bureaucrats”.89
It is nearly impossible to eliminate corruption within
the police until poor salaries and working conditions
are improved, particularly for personnel of and below
the rank of inspector. “We remain on call 24 hours of
every day of every week”, said an inspector, who
considers vacations “a blessing bestowed on very few
of us”.90 The police rank and file lack transport facilities
in a country where the public transportation infrastructure
is poor to non-existent. Even in the federal
capital, Islamabad, constables are often seen trying to
hitchhike to their stations or other areas of duty.
Housing facilities for the lower ranks and their families
are virtually non-existent, and their meagre salaries
rule out renting reasonable accommodation. “I have
six kids, a wife and a mother to take care of, and I have
to do all that on Rs 8,000 [around $130] a month”,
86 “NAB gets control of two FIA wings”, Dawn, 18 August
87 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, March 2008.
88 For more on the functioning of the NAB and accountability
courts, see Crisis Group Asia Report Nº86, Building Judicial
Independence in Pakistan, 10 November 2004; also Nadeem
Iqbal, “A new civilian face”, The News, 22 July 2007.
89 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, March 2008.
90 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 14
said a constable, who finds policing to be “the most
thankless job in the country”.91
91 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008.
It is hardly surprising that this under-staffed, illequipped,
deeply politicised, and pervasively corrupt
force has failed to counter the growing extremist
menace that is undermining the stability of the Pakistani
state, claiming hundreds of lives in terror attacks.
2007 could well be called the “year of the suicide
bomber”, whose attacks targeted the police and
the military as well as politicians.92
In November, Benazir Bhutto narrowly survived a
suicide bombing in Karachi that resulted in the deaths
of more than 140 party workers. Criticising the security
cover provided by the police,93 the PPP also questioned
the investigation that followed.94 In a letter reportedly
send by Bhutto to the government after that
attack, she held a number of officials responsible, including
IB Director General and Musharraf confidante
Brigadier (retired) Ejaz Shah.95
On 27 December, Bhutto was assassinated as she was
leaving a rally in Rawalpindi.96 Rejecting official
claims that Baitullah Mehsud, a tribal militant in
FATA, was responsible, the PPP criticised the government
for failing to provide the former prime minister
adequate security and once again raised questions
about official complicity. After forming a govern-
92 According to the U.S. State Department’s “Country Reports
on Terrorism”, there were as many as 45 suicide attacks
in Pakistan in 2007, compared to 22 such attacks between
2002 and 2006. See
93 Asim Yasin, “PPP seeks govt. explanation on Karachi
blasts”, The News, 11 November 2007.
94 The chief investigator, DIG Manzur Mughal, was withdrawn
from the case after Bhutto accused him of being present
when her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, was tortured in police
custody in 1999.
95 In an opinion piece published by CNN, Bhutto disclosed:
“It has now been two weeks since the horrific assassination
attempt against me and the police have still not filed my
complaint. They filed their own report without taking statements
from eyewitnesses”. She added: “there is for me the
most worrying: the adamant rejection by Islamabad of any
assistance from the state-of-the art forensic teams of the FBI
and Scotland Yard….We can only wonder – if there is nothing
to hide – why international investigators … are being prevented
from assisting a Pakistani-led investigation?”, Benazir
Bhutto, “No time for dictatorship”, CNN, 4 November
2007, at
index.html. See also “After bombing, Bhutto assails officials’
ties”, The New York Times, 20 October 2007.
96 For more on the assassination and its repercussions, see
Crisis Group Asia Briefing N°74, After Bhutto’s Murder: A
Way Forward for Pakistan, 2 January 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 15
ment, the PPP formally asked the UN to investigate
the assassination.97 This clearly indicated lack of confidence
in the capacity or willingness of local intelligence
and law-enforcement agencies to identify the
perpetrators; it also implied that the elected government
still does not control them.
Police officers concede that elements within their ranks
have links with jihadi and sectarian groups.98 “When
the state itself has consciously promoted extremism and
sectarianism for almost three decades, it’s not surprising
that these tendencies have managed to establish
roots inside the police force, just like they have within
the military”, said a police official.99 Yet, police connivance
or inaction is not the primary factor behind
the rise of terrorist violence. In Punjab, for instance,
the police maintain updated lists of sectarian activists
with criminal records, but intelligence agencies only
take action after a terror attack has occurred.100
Police officers stress that they “lay their lives on the
line every day in the fight against terrorism, more so
than the army”, even though they are “nowhere near
as numerous, well-equipped and resource-rich”.101 At
the same time, many are resentful that the military’s
inept counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism policies
have caused countless police deaths. In July 2007, for
instance, a suicide attack, in retaliation against the
storming of the Red Mosque compound in Islamabad
by army commandos, killed thirteen police.102 In October
2007, a suicide bomber killed three police
guarding a post outside Musharraf’s official residence
in Rawalpindi. “Are our constables dispensable?” questioned
an irate police official. “While the military remains
ensconced in their cantonments, too petrified to
move out, it is we who have to expose ourselves to protect
them. And then they have the audacity to say that
they have sacrificed the most in the war on terror”.103
97 Azim M. Mian, “Benazir’s murder: FM’s letter delivered
to Ban”, The News, 7 June 2008.
98 For more on the infiltration of sectarian groups into the police,
see Crisis Group Report, The State of Sectarianism in
Pakistan, op. cit.
99 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, December 2007.
100 Crisis Group Report, The State of Sectarianism in Pakistan,
op. cit.
101 Crisis Group interviews, Islamabad and Lahore, December
102 The military government had failed to act against jihadis
within the Red Mosque, instead allowing them to regroup,
rearm and reorganise for three months. There were more
than 100 deaths in the bloody clashes that occurred when the
military finally took action in July 2007.
103 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, January 2008.
If anything, 2008 promises to be an even bloodier year
for the police. In January, a suicide bomber outside
the Lahore High Court killed 21 police officers. In
February, more than 40 people died in a suicide attack
on the funeral procession of a police officer in Swat,
killed in a roadside bombing a day earlier.104 In
March, fifteen FIA personnel and eight civilians were
killed in a suicide car bomb attack on FIA’s Lahore
headquarters. Initial reports indicated that it was aimed
at preventing the FIA’s Special Investigations Unit
(the wing that deals with counter-terrorism operations)
from interrogating suspects involved in recent
terrorist activities in the city.105 On 6 July, a suicide
bomber killed fifteen police deployed on security duties
at an Islamist rally in Islamabad, commemorating
the first anniversary of the Red Mosque operation.106
With increased resources, improved forensic skills,
greater expertise in more specialised areas such as cyber
crime and freedom from political interference, the
police insist they could do a much better job countering
terrorism. Police officials complain almost all
money provided by the U.S. to counter-terrorism is
given to the military and its intelligence agencies,
with very little allocated for the police and civilian
intelligence agencies.
Since 2002, the U.S. has given more than $10 billion
to Pakistan, the bulk of which has gone to the military.
This is supposed to have been for its role in the
war on terror, but much of it has been spent on weapons
systems for the Indian front.107 “When American
largesse is poured into the coffers of the military, let
the Americans pause for an instant to reflect that policemen
put their lives on the line every single day in
the war on terrorism, often without even basic protective
equipment”, said a police officer in Peshawar, the
capital of the insurgency-hit Northwest Frontier Province
(NWFP).108 “Even if we were given one-tenth of
the money given [by the U.S.] to the military, we
would be able to do a much better job of hunting
down terrorists”, said another. “At the end of the day,
the police and its intelligence agencies should be the
natural choice to conduct counter-terrorism operations
104 “Bomb blast kills 45”, The Nation, 1 March 2008.
105 Syed Irfan Raza, “Attack aimed at preventing terrorists’
interrogation”, Dawn, 12 March 2008.
106 Syed Irfan Raza and Munawar Azeem, “Suicide bomber
avenges Lal Masjid crackdown: 15 policemen killed”,
Dawn, 7 July 2008.
107 Ahmed Rashid, “Pakistan’s worrisome pullback”, The
Washington Post, 6 June 2008.
108 Crisis Group interview, Peshawar, May 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 16
within Pakistani territory; the Americans need to recognise
that and redirect their aid”.109
In addition to inadequate funding, counter-terrorism
operations are hampered by lack of coordination between
an array of intelligence agencies – from the
military-run Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate
(ISI) and Military Intelligence (MI) to police outfits
such as the Intelligence Bureau, the Federal Investigation
Agency, the Criminal Investigation Department
and the Special Branch, each with their own counterterrorism
wings. The military’s encroachment into police
intelligence bodies has further soured relations
between civilian and military agencies even as it has
undermined police morale.110 “Imagine if the ISI
would ever agree to have a retired DIG heading it”,
remarked an IB official. “Yet, we must bite the bullet
and accept a brigadier heading us”, referring to
Brigadier (ret.) Ejaz Shah, IB chief until he was removed
by the PPP-led government.111
Most police officials believe that the IB should be the
country’s primary civilian intelligence agency and
given the authority to coordinate with and oversee the
efforts of other agencies on counter-terrorism and espionage,
“which is what it was always intended to
do”.112 Instead, the military-controlled ISI, which is
supposedly answerable to the prime minister but actually
functions under the army chief, dominates domestic
and external intelligence. The police insist the
ISI should either be transformed into a purely civilian
agency or its mandate should be restricted to intelligence
matters that relate solely to the armed services,
as suggested by its name.
The PPP-led government, which is still finding its feet
and faces multiple challenges, political, economic and
security-related, is not in a position to disband the ISI,
since it would fear a military backlash. However, the
civilian government must disband the agency’s political
wing, which has played a major role in destabilising
past democratic transitions. It should also place
the ISI firmly under the prime minister’s control. Indeed,
the two major parties that now form the ruling
coalition pledged to disband the political wings of all
intelligence agencies in the Charter of Democracy,
109 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, March 2008.
110 Musharraf had appointed a former military officer, Brigadier
(retired) Ejaz Shah, as director general of the Intelligence
111 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, November 2008.
112 Crisis Group interview, senior IB official, Islamabad, May
signed by Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif in May
113 Article 32 of the Charter states: “The ISI, MI and other
security agencies shall be accountable to the elected government
through Prime Minister Sectt (Secretariat), Ministry
of Defence, and Cabinet Division respectively. Their budgets
will be approved by DCC (Defence Committee of the Cabinet)
after recommendations are prepared by the respective
ministry. The political wings of all intelligence agencies will
be disbanded. A committee will be formed to cut waste and
bloat in the armed forces and security agencies in the interest
of the defence and security of the country. All senior postings
in these agencies shall be made with the approval of the
government through respective ministry”. See the text of the
Charter of Democracy in Dawn, 16 May 2006.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 17
Pakistan’s police force has a well-deserved reputation
for corruption, highhandedness and abuse of human
rights. It is justifiably mistrusted and disliked by citizens.
Internally too, the police are in urgent need of
reform. Appointments are not made on merit, training
is neglected, and the rank and file are poorly paid and
badly treated. Reforming this police into an institution
that serves and protects citizens will require time, the
political will of the government and the support of the
international community, particularly the U.S. and the
European Union (EU). Now that a democraticallyelected
government is in power, police reform is not
only possible but should be a priority. A police force
that serves and protects the citizen would restore public
trust in the state and help stabilise the democratic
transition. An effective, disciplined and wellequipped
force would also be capable of tackling the
growing challenges of militancy and extremism.
The Awami National Party (ANP)-led NWFP coalition
government, in which the PPP is junior partner,
has proposed a $4 billion plan to curb growing militancy
in the province that adjoins the insurgency-hit
Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).114 The
plan includes increasing the numbers of provincial
police by 8,000 and the Frontier Constabulary (a paramilitary
agency under police command) by 6,000. It
also seeks to reform the police and revive the system
of executive magistracy abolished by Musharraf’s
devolution scheme. The framers of the plan have decided
to convene a donors’ conference to finance it
and claim that several external players including the
U.S., the EU, Saudi Arabia and China have already
demonstrated an interest.115
114 For more on violence and radicalism in FATA and the
Musharraf regime’s response, see Crisis Group Asia Report
Nº125, Pakistan’s Tribal Areas: Appeasing the Militants, 11
December 2006.
115 Ismail Khan, “$4 bn peace plan for NWFP”, Dawn, 2
May 2008. The plan includes the creation of a Provincial
Peace Board to oversee, review, discuss, analyse and recommend
actions to restore peace. It envisages the setting up
of a board to suggest reforms on delivery of justice. It also
calls for closer coordination between and a mechanism for
institutional support among security agencies, including the
police, the Frontier Constabulary, the Frontier Corps (a paramilitary
force under army command) and the military.
In its haste to curb militancy in the province, the ANP
has, however, also reached an accord with a Sunni
militant group, the Tehreek Nifaz Shariah Mohammadi,
in Swat district, accepting demands that include
the release of terrorist suspects and detainees and the
imposition of Sharia (Islamic law). While the ANP’s
accord will embolden extremists and is unlikely to
pay counter-insurgency dividends, NWFP’s new IG,
Malik Naveed Khan, has devised a separate plan,
which, if properly implemented, could improve internal
security in the province.
The ANP would be well-advised to accept and immediately
implement this plan, which envisages the establishment
of an elite force of 7,500 well-trained and
properly-equipped police that would operate separately
from the Criminal Investigation Department
(CID) and focus exclusively on fighting terrorism and
militancy.116 The IG believes that police morale would
improve if officers were given proper equipment,
such as bullet-proof jackets, heavy weapons and armoured
personnel carriers, as well as fortified bunkers.
“Initiatives like these need to be encouraged and
entertained, not only by our own government but also
by foreign donor governments”, said a police officer
in Peshawar. “Pumping billions into the military and
contributing virtually nothing to civilian law enforcement
agencies, like the U.S. has been doing for the last
decade, has clearly been counterproductive”.117
In Punjab, Pakistan’s largest federal unit in terms of
population and also the most affluent and welldeveloped,
there is only one forensic science laboratory,
seven police training institutions (three of which
are still in the planning phase) and two women police
stations.118 The entire province has some 167,000 police,
one to approximately 480 people, and 616 police
stations to meet the needs of almost 80 million people
in 35 districts. The total number of police vehicles,
including motorcycles, in Punjab is only 16,639. The
provincial capital, Lahore, with around ten million inhabitants,
has only 25,100 police, one for every 398
residents (429 of whom are women), with 77 police
stations of which only one is exclusively for women.
In Sindh’s capital, Karachi, with a population of more
than sixteen million, the country’s commercial heartland
as well as its most crime-ridden city, the authorised
strength of the police is 28,964, one to 598 residents,
but only 26,873 are posted there. In contrast,
116 Javed Aziz Khan, “Police to have elite force to fight terrorism:
IGP”, The News, 18 March 2008.
117 Crisis Group interview, Peshawar, May 2008.
118 Information obtained by Crisis Group from the Punjab
police. On women police issues, see section VII.B.3 below.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 18
India’s capital New Delhi, with a population only
somewhat lower than Karachi, has a 57,500-strong
police force.119
In other regions, too, numbers on the ground are below
authorised strength; 16,748, for instance are approved
for Hyderabad region, but actual strength is
16,220; in Sukkur region, the figures are 23,292 and
21,923. Sindh’s Crime Investigation Department has
an authorised strength of 361 officers but 63 vacancies.
120 Instead of ensuring that the police force has
the resources it needs in Sindh, much of its budget is
diverted to the Pakistan Rangers, a paramilitary organisation,
which serves under army command and is
not accountable to the provincial government. The
Rangers, said a police officer, have failed to contain
crime and violence, but the police “always get the flak
for whatever goes wrong in Karachi”.121
In the federal capital, the same officer disclosed, “60
per cent of the Islamabad police at present is engaged
in protecting VIPs and providing security to diplomats.
Hardly any real police strength is, therefore,
available to fight crime and maintain order”.122
Enhancing the numbers of police would help create
the capacity to ensure internal security, but an effective
reform process must also be directed at modernising
the force and bringing it in line with the demands
of a democratic society. This process should encompass
training methods and procedures; systems of recruitment;
salary, reward and pension structures; and
welfare services. The government should empower
managerial organisations like the National Public
Safety Commission, the Federal Police Complaints
Authority and the National Police Management Board
and give due weight to their recommendations. “Ever
since their inception, these bodies have never gone
beyond the status of talk-shops that occasionally meet
to suggest measures for improving police performance
that are almost always disregarded by the government”,
said a senior police officer.123
Most police officials favour retaining the managerial
bodies created by the Police Order provided they are
allowed to operate free from political interference and
119 See
120 Official website of the Sindh Police, www.sindhpolice.
121 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, May 2008.
122 Ibid.
123 Crisis Group interview, Peshawar, April 2008.
their reform proposals are acted upon. The National
Police Management Board, consisting of the heads of
federal and provincial police establishments and federal
law enforcement agencies, is authorised to advise
the federal and provincial governments on a wide
range of issues, including general planning, education
and training, gender sensitisation, criminal identification
facilities, criminal statistics and police equipment.
124 It is charged with identifying and arranging
research in criminology, terrorism, sectarian and ethnic
violence, drug trafficking, organised crime and
inter-provincial crime and recommending grants to
the federal government to enhance the operational capabilities
of police and federal law enforcement bodies.
“If genuinely activated and given due importance,
the Board has the potential to dramatically improve
police performance”, said a senior police official in
The Federal Police Complaints Authority could potentially
redress public grievances if given the requisite
powers. Under Article 100 of the Police Order, it
can receive complaints of neglect, excess or misconduct
against the Islamabad police or any member of a
federal law enforcement agency and refer regular
cases to an appropriate authority for action. If the case
is of a more serious nature, it can initiate action on its
own. It can also recommend disciplinary action
against an inquiry officer for wilful neglect or mishandling
of an inquiry. Provincial complaint authorities
have been given the same roles with regard to
provincial law enforcement personnel. But “the complaints
authorities can be effective in checking police
excesses only if their recommendations for disciplinary
action are implemented in letter and spirit”, a police
officer said, warning that if “recommendations
are sacrificed at the altar of political or administrative
expediency, there will be no real let-up in police excesses
against the public or dereliction of duty on the
part of police officials”.126
Any effective police reform will require parliamentary
oversight of police performance and accountability.
The National Assembly’s Standing Committee on
Interior should set up a sub-committee on policing. It
should be tasked with making the police accountable
to the people’s representatives and given the authority
to scrutinise the National Police Management Board’s
recommendations and then recommend that those it
considers viable and desirable be accepted and immediately
implemented by the government.
124 Police Order 2002, Article 160.
125 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, May 2008.
126 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, May 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 19
The international community, particularly the U.S.
and the EU can contribute to this modernisation process.
The U.S. should enhance and supplement professional
development programs for the police and civilian
intelligence agencies. It should provide technical
and fiscal assistance for forensic laboratories, both
existing and additional ones, and the computerisation
of police records. The EU could assist by providing
trainers for police institutions in the centre and the
provinces and helping to upgrade curriculum at the
National Police Academy, with particular emphasis
on community policing.
1. Salaries and resource allocation
Conditions of service and facilities, particularly for
the rank and file, are abysmal; the salaries of senior
officers are also far from generous. In Punjab, for instance,
the monthly pay and allowances of the inspector
general, the highest ranking officer in the province,
amount to Rs 41,698 ($620); at the bottom of
the hierarchy, the monthly salary of a police constable
is Rs 8,932 (some $133). On the average countrywide,
police constables are paid monthly salaries that
range between Rs 7,000 and Rs 10,000 ($115-$166),
depending on location and length of service.127 Without
improved salaries, no amount of oversight will
help curb the corruption that is rife in the police.
Financial allocations for the police do not meet needs,
undermining the force’s ability to perform internal security
functions effectively. In 2007-2008, the budgetary
allocation for the Punjab police was Rs 33 billion
($492 million);128 in Sindh it was Rs 16 billion
($238 million).129 While Rs 49 billion ($730 million)
were spent on the police in the two largest provinces,
the military budget for the same period was Rs 275
billion ($4 billion),130 not counting U.S. military aid,
including Coalition Support Funds and Foreign Military
Financing. If elected governments in the centre
and the provinces are to ensure that the police can
protect and serve citizens, they will have to improve
police salaries. If the state is to effectively check rising
militant violence and terrorism, it must provide
the police force the fiscal resources it needs to get the
job done.
127 Salary structures vary only slightly from province to province.
128 Budgetary figures obtained by Crisis Group from sources
in the Punjab police.
129 Official website of the Sindh police, www.sindhpolice.
130 “Defence budget may go up”, Daily Times, 23 May 2008.
2. Community policing
Any effective police reform effort must focus on reducing
the trust deficit between the force and the public
by adopting community policing procedures and
techniques. With a democratically-elected government
now in place, the police force should be encouraged
to respect fundamental freedoms while enforcing
the law. It should also be encouraged to make communities
equal partners in the fight against terrorism
and crime.
Community policing consists of two complementary
core components: partnership and problem solving.
To develop community partnership, the police must
build positive relations with the community, involve
the community in the quest for better crime control
and prevention and pool their resources with those of
the community to address the community’s most urgent
Problem solving is the process through which the specific
concerns of communities are identified and the
most appropriate remedies devised. Community policing
does not undermine police authority or subordinate
its primary duty to preserve law and order. Rather, it
allows the police to tap into the expertise and resources
of communities, thereby reducing some of their own
load. Local government officials, social agencies,
student unions, labour unions, business and trading
interests, in short, all who live in the community and
have a direct stake in its development and progress,
can share responsibility with police to find solutions
to the problems that threaten safety and security.132
Under the Police Order 2002, the government was
authorised to establish Citizen Police Liaison Committees
(CPLCs) as voluntary, self-financing and
autonomous bodies to develop, among other objectives,
“a mechanism for liaison between aggrieved
citizens and the police for providing relief”.133 The
committees could have fostered greater trust had they
been given adequate funding, autonomy and importance,
but they were not. “The Musharraf regime did
set up CPLCs in major cities like Lahore and Faisalabad,
but they have hardly any authority and have
consequently achieved nothing of significance thus
far”, said a Lahore officer.134
131 “Understanding Community Policing: A Framework for
Action”, U.S. justice department, NCJ 148457, August 1994.
132 Ibid.
133 Police Order 2002, Article 168 (2).
134 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, May 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 20
Police officials believe that relations with the public
and police performance in general could improve
considerably if the CPLCs were made more effective,
along the lines of the country’s first such committee,
set up in Karachi in 1989. Created as a non-political
statutory institution by former Justice of the Supreme
Court and then Sindh Governor Fakhruddin G. Ibrahim,
it was operationally independent and managed
by concerned citizens on a voluntary basis. Now in
existence for almost two decades, it has worked well
despite difficult conditions. It has helped improve police
efficiency and coordination with citizens. Its
functions include:135
􀂉 developing and maintaining databases, for example
of crimes, prisoners and stolen vehicles;
􀂉 determining if investigating officers are delaying
assigned cases;
􀂉 locating persons unlawfully detained at police stations
and securing their release;
􀂉 reporting misconduct or neglect of duty by police
officers; and
􀂉 looking into police welfare and initiating improvements
to living conditions for the police.
This CPLC’s operational expenditures are met mainly
through private donations; the government provides
very little financial support. Since 1990, it has handled
over 400 cases of kidnapping for ransom and has
helped in apprehending 100 groups of kidnappers,
consisting of over 350 criminals.136 It has provided
cellular phones and pagers to law enforcement agencies
for effective liaison in general, and particularly
during counter-terrorism operations.
“The CPLC may not be the panacea for all the ills bedevilling
relations between the police and the public,
but it is definitely a step in the right direction, particularly
if given meaningful autonomy”, said a police officer
in Karachi.137 It is encouraging, therefore, that
the PPP-led government has expressed its intention to
establish such committees at various operational levels
of the police.138 These committees should have a
meaningful female representation and include human
rights activists.
135 See
136 See
137 Crisis Group interview, Karachi, May 2008.
138 “Interior Ministry decides to rehabilitate displaced people
of NWFP and Balochistan”, Associated Press of Pakistan, 15
May 2008.
The government should also establish the office of an
independent police ombudsman.139 The prime minister
could appoint the ombudsman on the recommendation
of a panel consisting of members of the legal
fraternity and human rights activists to investigate serious
incidents of police abuse, including deaths in
custody and excessive use of force.
3. Female policing
Within the framework of community policing, the
new government must also take care not to neglect the
status of female police officers and the resolution of
cases pertaining to crimes against women. There is a
serious countrywide shortage of female police stations.
140 The first was set up in 1994 during Benazir
Bhutto’s second term as prime minister to support and
protect victims of gender violence, giving them an alternative
to registering such complaints in maledominated
stations. The military government, however,
was indifferent to the concept. Very few such
stations were set up, and the few that exist often lack
even basic facilities such as telephones and adequate
transport. In some cases, these police stations have
actually become examples of female disempowerment;
in NWFP, for instance, policewomen are not
allowed to leave the station without the permission of
senior male police officers.141
Nor was there much interest in improving the working
conditions of female police officers or their functioning.
Instead of preventing violent crime against
women, the female police today merely assist their
male counterparts in maintaining order as and when
required; their only gender-based role is restricted to
detaining women in their lock-ups.142 Women police
officers, even in exclusively female stations, are unable
to register a case without clearance from their
male superiors and have no powers of investigation.
“We are neither given proper training nor allocated
139 See Crisis Group Asia Report Nº138, Reforming Afghanistan’s
Police, 30 August 2007.
140 There is one female police station in Balochistan, two in
the NWFP, three in Sindh, two in Punjab and one in Islamabad.
Additionally, there are special cells for women detainees
in four regular police stations in Karachi, one station in
Rawalpindi and one station in Sialkot. See “Women Police
Stations”, Society for the Advancement of Community,
Health, Education and Training, at
141 Azka Tanveer, “Police and Gender Crimes: Protection vs.
Perpetration”, SDPI Research and News Bulletin, vol. 13, no.
2-3 (March-June 2006), at
142 Aroosa Masroor, “Women’s police stations remain victims
of neglect and official apathy”, The News, 2 May 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 21
sufficient resources, which explains why most women
who join the police do so only if they can find no other
profession”, said a female police officer in Lahore.143
The need for more and fully functional female police
stations and complaint cells is especially acute. Custodial
sexual abuse of women by policemen has increased
alarmingly. While police officers are not
authorised to detain women in male lock-ups or to interrogate
them without the presence of female staff,
such detentions have become commonplace.144 Moreover,
since most male police officers, particularly the
less educated at the lower end of the hierarchy, demonstrate
little gender sensitivity with regards to crimes
against women, especially rape, female victims are
understandably reluctant to approach them.
The PPP-led government has begun to examine ways
in which the police could be reformed. In May 2008,
the National Public Safety Commission (NPSC)
meeting resulted in the establishment of a committee
under the FIA director general to suggest amendments
to the Police Order within 30 days. That deadline has
lapsed with no action taken, indicating the resistance
of some police bodies, or at the very least officials, to
reform and oversight.145
According to sources within the National Police Bureau,
which functions as the NPSC’s secretariat, the
Police Order will not be scrapped but Musharraf’s
2004 “arbitrary and mala fide [bad faith]” amendments
would be removed and the order returned “as
closely as possible to what it was like when originally
framed”.146 The government has also set up another
committee, headed by the director general of the National
Police Bureau, charged with preparing a welfare
package for the police, to improve salaries, health
facilities and other benefits, particularly for junior
ranks. Police morale would also improve if the government
provided meaningful pensions to the families
of officers killed in the line of duty and publicly recognised
their acts of bravery.
It also appears that the government intends to return
the anti-crime and economic wings of the National
Accountability Bureau to the FIA and restrict the
former’s powers to dealing with “major financial
143 Crisis Group interview, Lahore, November 2007.
144 Tanveer, op. cit.
145 “Interior Ministry decides to rehabilitate displaced people”,
op. cit.
146 Crisis Group interview, Islamabad, May 2008.
scams”.147 However, merely limiting the NAB’s powers
would be insufficient. The ruling coalition would
be better served by adhering to the Charter of Democracy
its leaders signed in 2006, which called for the
NAB’s replacement by “an independent accountability
commission, whose chairman shall be nominated
by the prime minister in consultation with the leader
of opposition and confirmed by a joint parliamentary
committee with 50 per cent members from treasury
benches and remaining 50 per cent from opposition
parties in same manner as appointment of judges
through transparent public hearing”.148
The newly-elected governments in the centre and the
provinces have also decided to increase the size of the
police force. The PPP-led government in Sindh, for
instance, has announced an immediate recruitment of
8,500 personnel and pledged to recruit an additional
10,000 every year until the force is sufficient to meet
the province’s needs. The federal government, too,
intends to increase the size of the federal forces and to
set up a separate Islamabad Constabulary.149
PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari has supported the
transformation of the police into a “superior service”,
with operational autonomy, free from all financial and
administrative pressures. While his suggestion and
other proposed measures have been welcomed in police
circles, there is also concern that police appointments
and those that have a direct impact on the force
are being made far more on political than professional
Many officers are unhappy, for instance, with the appointment
of a former FIA official, Rehman Malik, as
adviser to the prime minister on interior matters, in
effect in charge of the federal police and its affiliated
bodies.150 “How can police performance ever improve
when men who do not enjoy its respect are put in
charge of running it?” asked a former officer.151 If the
government is indeed committed to reforming the police,
it should ensure that such political appointments
are made after wider consultation with parliament and
coalition partners and with the input of police management
147 Zulqernain Tahir, “FIA may get two wings back from
NAB”, Dawn, 4 April 2008.
148 Charter of Democracy, op. cit., Article 13 (d).
149 Crisis Group interview, police official, National Police
Bureau, Islamabad, May 2008.
150 A controversial figure, Rehman Malik served in the FIA
during Benazir Bhutto’s second tenure as prime minister and
went into exile after her government was ousted.
151 Crisis Group interview, Peshawar, April 2008.
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 22
Retaining the Police Order in its totality, amending it
or even scrapping it altogether is the prerogative of
the democratically-elected governments that have
now taken power at the centre and in the provinces.
Police opinion should, however, be ascertained first,
as must be the views of relevant segments of civil society,
including lawyers and the media, so as to
evolve a national consensus on how to transform the
police into a disciplined, efficient and modern organisation
that serves and protects citizens. As an immediate
first step, the amendments made to the order in
2004 must be removed.
Whatever the fate of the Police Order, the police will
not be reformed merely through changes in legislation;
those must be accompanied by a new mindset,
most particularly on the part of the political executive.
If the system of policing is to be truly reformed, operations
must be insulated from political interference.
Postings, transfers and recruitments must be made
solely on merit, and the best way of ensuring this is to
empower the public safety commissions. They must
be allowed to perform their supervisory role free from
political pressures. For that to happen, they should be
transparently constituted, with parity between members
from ruling and opposition benches.
The government and its Western allies would be best
served by reallocating resources from the military to
the police. The police and civilian intelligence agencies
are far more appropriate than the military for internal
security functions, if militancy, extremism and
terrorism are to be effectively curbed, but they must
be given the tools they need. This means more
money, better training and the latest weapons and
equipment, as well as an end to military dominance
and control of internal law enforcement institutions,
processes and decision-making. The Intelligence Bureau
should replace Inter-Services Intelligence as the
premier intelligence agency.
Democratically-elected governments at the centre and
in the provinces, unlike their military predecessors,
have to meet the demands of their constituents for
safety and security. Without reforming the police,
they will fail in this. Police reform should, therefore,
be high on their agenda. However, the elected representatives
of the people would do well to remember
that the police can never be reformed until they work
with each other across partisan lines, as well as with
the police and other relevant players, to evolve a consensus
on making an agency that serves the public
and not the party or parties in power. Only through
such a consensus can an effective system of policing
be put in place that will gain the confidence of the
citizen and protect the security of the state.
Islamabad/Brussels, 14 July 2008
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 23
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 24
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Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 25
The Curse of Cotton: Central Asia’s Destructive Monoculture,
Asia Report N°93, 28 February 2005 (also available in Russian)
Kyrgyzstan: After the Revolution, Asia Report N°97, 4 May
2005 (also available in Russian)
Uzbekistan: The Andijon Uprising, Asia Briefing N°38, 25 May
2005 (also available in Russian)
Kyrgyzstan: A Faltering State, Asia Report N°109, 16 December
2005 (also available in Russian)
Uzbekistan: In for the Long Haul, Asia Briefing N°45, 16
February 2006 (also available in Russian)
Central Asia: What Role for the European Union?, Asia Report
N°113, 10 April 2006
Kyrgyzstan’s Prison System Nightmare, Asia Report N°118,
16 August 2006 (also available in Russian)
Uzbekistan: Europe’s Sanctions Matter, Asia Briefing N°54,
6 November 2006
Kyrgyzstan on the Edge, Asia Briefing N°55, 9 November 2006
(also available in Russian)
Turkmenistan after Niyazov, Asia Briefing N°60, 12 February 2007
Central Asia’s Energy Risks, Asia Report N°133, 24 May 2007
(also available in Russian)
Uzbekistan: Stagnation and Uncertainty, Asia Briefing N°67,
22 August 2007
Political Murder in Central Asia: No Time to End Uzbekistan’s
Isolation, Asia Briefing N°76, 13 February 2008
Kyrgyzstan: The Challenge of Judicial Reform, Asia Report
N°150, 10 April 2008
North Korea: Can the Iron Fist Accept the Invisible Hand?,
Asia Report N°96, 25 April 2005 (also available in Korean and
Japan and North Korea: Bones of Contention, Asia Report
Nº100, 27 June 2005 (also available in Korean)
China and Taiwan: Uneasy Détente, Asia Briefing N°42, 21
September 2005
North East Asia’s Undercurrents of Conflict, Asia Report N°108,
15 December 2005 (also available in Korean and Russian)
China and North Korea: Comrades Forever?, Asia Report
N°112, 1 February 2006 (also available in Korean)
After North Korea’s Missile Launch: Are the Nuclear Talks
Dead?, Asia Briefing N°52, 9 August 2006 (also available in
Korean and Russian)
Perilous Journeys: The Plight of North Koreans in China and
Beyond, Asia Report N°122, 26 October 2006 (also available
in Korean and Russian)
North Korea’s Nuclear Test: The Fallout, Asia Briefing N°56,
13 November 2006 (also available in Korean and Russian)
After the North Korean Nuclear Breakthrough: Compliance
or Confrontation?, Asia Briefing N°62, 30 April 2007 (also
available in Korean and Russian)
North Korea-Russia Relations: A Strained Friendship, Asia
Briefing N°71, 4 December 2007 (also available in Russian)
South Korea’s Election: What to Expect from President Lee,
Asia Briefing N°73, 21 December 2007
China’s Thirst for Oil, Asia Report N°153, 9 June 2008
South Korea’s Elections: A Shift to the Right, Asia Briefing
N°77, 30 June 2008
Nepal’s Royal Coup: Making a Bad Situation Worse, Asia
Report N°91, 9 February 2005
Afghanistan: Getting Disarmament Back on Track, Asia Briefing
N°35, 23 February 2005
Nepal: Responding to the Royal Coup, Asia Briefing N°35,
24 February 2005
Nepal: Dealing with a Human Rights Crisis, Asia Report N°94,
24 March 2005
The State of Sectarianism in Pakistan, Asia Report N°95, 18
April 2005
Political Parties in Afghanistan, Asia Briefing N°39, 2 June 2005
Towards a Lasting Peace in Nepal: The Constitutional Issues,
Asia Report N°99, 15 June 2005
Afghanistan Elections: Endgame or New Beginning?, Asia
Report N°101, 21 July 2005
Nepal: Beyond Royal Rule, Asia Briefing N°41, 15 September 2005
Authoritarianism and Political Party Reform in Pakistan¸
Asia Report N°102, 28 September 2005
Nepal’s Maoists: Their Aims, Structure and Strategy, Asia
Report N°104, 27 October 2005 (also available in Nepali)
Pakistan’s Local Polls: Shoring Up Military Rule, Asia Briefing
N°43, 22 November 2005
Nepal’s New Alliance: The Mainstream Parties and the Maoists,
Asia Report N°106, 28 November 2005
Rebuilding the Afghan State: The European Union’s Role,
Asia Report N°107, 30 November 2005
Nepal: Electing Chaos, Asia Report N°111, 31 January 2006
Pakistan: Political Impact of the Earthquake, Asia Briefing
N°46, 15 March 2006
Nepal’s Crisis: Mobilising International Influence, Asia Briefing
N°49, 19 April 2006
Nepal: From People Power to Peace?, Asia Report N°115, 10
May 2006 (also available in Nepali)
Afghanistan’s New Legislature: Making Democracy Work, Asia
Report N°116, 15 May 2006
India, Pakistan and Kashmir: Stabilising a Cold Peace, Asia
Briefing N°51, 15 June 2006
Pakistan: the Worsening Conflict in Balochistan, Asia Report
N°119, 14 September 2006
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 26
Bangladesh Today, Asia Report N°121, 23 October 2006
Countering Afghanistan’s Insurgency: No Quick Fixes, Asia
Report N°123, 2 November 2006
Sri Lanka: The Failure of the Peace Process, Asia Report
N°124, 28 November 2006
Pakistan’s Tribal Areas: Appeasing the Militants, Asia Report
N°125, 11 December 2006
Nepal’s Peace Agreement: Making it Work, Asia Report Nº126,
15 December 2006
Afghanistan’s Endangered Compact, Asia Briefing Nº59, 29
January 2007
Nepal’s Constitutional Process, Asia Report N°128, 26 February
2007 (also available in Nepali)
Pakistan: Karachi’s Madrasas and Violent Extremism, Asia
Report N°130, 29 March 2007
Discord in Pakistan’s Northern Areas, Asia Report N°131, 2
April 2007
Nepal’s Maoists: Purists or Pragmatists?, Asia Report N°132,
18 May 2007 (also available in Nepali)
Sri Lanka’s Muslims: Caught in the Crossfire, Asia Report
N°134, 29 May 2007
Sri Lanka’s Human Rights Crisis, Asia Report N°135, 14
June 2007
Nepal’s Troubled Tarai Region, Asia Report N°136, 9 July 2007
(also available in Nepali)
Elections, Democracy and Stability in Pakistan, Asia Report
N°137, 31 July 2007
Reforming Afghanistan’s Police, Asia Report N°138, 30 August
Nepal’s Fragile Peace Process, Asia Briefing N°68, 28 September
2007 (also available in Nepali)
Pakistan: The Forgotten Conflict in Balochistan, Asia Briefing
N°69, 22 October 2007
Sri Lanka: Sinhala Nationalism and the Elusive Southern
Consensus, Asia Report N°141, 7 November 2007
Winding Back Martial Law in Pakistan, Asia Briefing N°70,
12 November 2007
Nepal: Peace Postponed, Asia Briefing N°72, 18 December 2007
(also available in Nepali)
After Bhutto’s Murder: A Way Forward for Pakistan, Asia
Briefing N°74, 2 January 2008
Afghanistan: The Need for International Resolve, Asia Report
N°145, 6 February 2008
Sri Lanka’s Return to War: Limiting the Damage, Asia Report
N°146, 20 February 2008
Nepal’s Election and Beyond, Asia Report N°149, 2 April 2008
(also available in Nepali)
Restoring Democracy in Bangladesh, Asia Report N°151, 28
April 2008
Nepal’s Election: A Peaceful Revolution?, Asia Report N°155, 3
July 2008
Nepal’s New Political Landscape, Asia Report N°156, 3 July
Recycling Militants in Indonesia: Darul Islam and the Australian
Embassy Bombing, Asia Report N°92, 22 February 2005 (also
available in Indonesian)
Decentralisation and Conflict in Indonesia: The Mamasa
Case, Asia Briefing N°37, 3 May 2005
Southern Thailand: Insurgency, Not Jihad, Asia Report N°98,
18 May 2005 (also available in Thai)
Aceh: A New Chance for Peace, Asia Briefing N°40, 15 August 2005
Weakening Indonesia’s Mujahidin Networks: Lessons from
Maluku and Poso, Asia Report N°103, 13 October 2005 (also
available in Indonesian)
Thailand’s Emergency Decree: No Solution, Asia Report N°105,
18 November 2005 (also available in Thai)
Aceh: So Far, So Good, Asia Briefing N°44, 13 December 2005
(also available in Indonesian)
Philippines Terrorism: The Role of Militant Islamic Converts,
Asia Report Nº110, 19 December 2005
Papua: The Dangers of Shutting Down Dialogue, Asia Briefing
N°47, 23 March 2006 (also available in Indonesian)
Aceh: Now for the Hard Part, Asia Briefing N°48, 29 March 2006
Managing Tensions on the Timor-Leste/Indonesia Border,
Asia Briefing N°50, 4 May 2006
Terrorism in Indonesia: Noordin’s Networks, Asia Report N°114,
5 May 2006 (also available in Indonesian)
Islamic Law and Criminal Justice in Aceh, Asia Report N°117,
31 July 2006 (also available in Indonesian)
Papua: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions, Asia Briefing
N°53, 5 September 2006
Resolving Timor-Leste’s Crisis, Asia Report N°120, 10 October
2006 (also available in Indonesian)
Aceh’s Local Elections: The Role of the Free Aceh Movement
(GAM), Asia Briefing N°57, 29 November 2006
Myanmar: New Threats to Humanitarian Aid, Asia Briefing
N°58, 8 December 2006
Jihadism in Indonesia: Poso on the Edge, Asia Report N°127,
24 January 2007
Southern Thailand: The Impact of the Coup, Asia Report
N°129, 15 March 2007 (also available in Thai)
Indonesia: How GAM Won in Aceh , Asia Briefing N°61, 22
March 2007
Indonesia: Jemaah Islamiyah’s Current Status, Asia Briefing
N°63, 3 May 2007
Indonesia: Decentralisation and Local Power Struggles in
Maluku, Asia Briefing N°64, 22 May 2007
Timor-Leste’s Parliamentary Elections, Asia Briefing N°65,
12 June 2007
Indonesian Papua: A Local Perspective on the Conflict, Asia
Briefing N°66, 19 July 2007 (also available in Indonesian)
Aceh: Post-Conflict Complications, Asia Report N°139, 4
October 2007 (also available in Indonesian)
Southern Thailand: The Problem with Paramilitaries, Asia
Report N°140, 23 October 2007 (also available in Thai)
“Deradicalisation” and Indonesian Prisons, Asia Report N°142,
19 November 2007
Timor-Leste: Security Sector Reform, Asia Report N°143, 17
January 2008 (also available in Tetum)
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 27
Indonesia: Tackling Radicalism in Poso, Asia Briefing N°75,
22 January 2008
Burma/Myanmar: After the Crackdown, Asia Report N°144,
31 January 2008
Indonesia: Jemaah Islamiyah’s Publishing Industry, Asia
Report N°147, 28 February 2008
Timor-Leste’s Displacement Crisis, Asia Report N°148, 31
March 2008
The Philippines: Counter-insurgency vs. Counter-terrorism in
Mindanao, Asia Report N°152, 14 May 2008
Indonesia: Communal Tensions in Papua, Asia Report N°154,
16 June 2008
Indonesia: Implications of the Ahmadiyah Decree, Asia Briefing
N°77, 7 July 2008
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Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 28
Christopher Patten
Former European Commissioner for
External Relations, Governor of Hong
Kong and UK Cabinet Minister; Chancellor
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Thomas Pickering
Former U.S. Ambassador to the UN,
Russia, India, Israel, Jordan, El Salvador
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Louise Arbour
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Former President of European Parliament
Uffe Ellemann-Jensen
Former Foreign Minister of Denmark
Mark Eyskens
Former Prime Minister of Belgium
Joschka Fischer
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President, Carnegie Endowment for
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Moisés Naím
Editor-in-chief, Foreign Policy; former
Minister of Trade and Industry of
Ayo Obe
Chair of Steering Committee of World
Movement for Democracy, Nigeria
Christine Ockrent
Journalist and author, France
Victor Pinchuk
Founder of Interpipe Scientific and
Industrial Production Group
Samantha Power
Author and Professor, Kennedy School of
Government, Harvard University
Fidel V. Ramos
Former President of Philippines
Güler Sabancı
Chairperson, Sabancı Holding, Turkey
Reforming Pakistan’s Police
Crisis Group Asia Report N°157, 14 July 2008 Page 29
Ghassan Salamé
Former Minister, Lebanon; Professor of
International Relations, Paris
Thorvald Stoltenberg
Former Foreign Minister of Norway
Lawrence Summers
Former President, Harvard University;
Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury
Ernesto Zedillo
Former President of Mexico; Director,
Yale Center for the Study of Globalization
Crisis Group’s President’s Council is a distinguished group of major individual and corporate donors providing
essential support, time and expertise to Crisis Group in delivering its core mission.
Khalid Alireza
BHP Billiton
Canaccord Adams Limited
Bob Cross
Equinox Partners
Frank Holmes
George Landegger
Iara Lee & George Gund III
Ford Nicholson
Ian Telfer
Guy Ullens de Schooten
Neil Woodyer
Don Xia
Crisis Group’s International Advisory Council comprises significant individual and corporate donors who contribute
their advice and experience to Crisis Group on a regular basis.
Rita E. Hauser
Elliott Kulick
Marc Abramowitz
Hamza al Kholi
Anglo American PLC
APCO Worldwide Inc.
Ed Bachrach
Patrick Benzie
Stanley Bergman &
Edward Bergman
Harry Bookey and
Pamela Bass-Bookey
John Chapman Chester
Richard Cooper
Credit Suisse
Neil & Sandy DeFeo
John Ehara
Frontier Strategy Group
Seth Ginns
Alan Griffiths
Charlotte & Fred
Khaled Juffali
George Kellner
Amed Khan
Shiv Vikram Khemka
Scott Lawlor
Jean Manas
McKinsey & Company
Najib Mikati
Harriet Mouchly-Weiss
Donald Pels
Michael Riordan
StatoilHydro ASA
Tilleke & Gibbins
Yasuyo Yamazaki
Yapı Merkezi
Construction and
Industry Inc.
Shinji Yazaki
Sunny Yoon
Crisis Group’s Senior Advisers are former Board Members (not presently holding national government executive office)
who maintain an association with Crisis Group, and whose advice and support are called on from time to time.
Martti Ahtisaari
(Chairman Emeritus)
Diego Arria
Paddy Ashdown
Zainab Bangura
Christoph Bertram
Jorge Castañeda
Alain Destexhe
Marika Fahlén
Stanley Fischer
Malcolm Fraser
Bronislaw Geremek
I.K. Gujral
Max Jakobson
Todung Mulya Lubis
Allan J. MacEachen
Barbara McDougall
Matthew McHugh
George J. Mitchell
(Chairman Emeritus)
Surin Pitsuwan
Cyril Ramaphosa
George Robertson
Michel Rocard
Volker Ruehe
Mohamed Sahnoun
Salim A. Salim
William Taylor
Leo Tindemans
Ed van Thijn
Shirley Williams
Grigory Yavlinski
Uta Zapf

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