Home Global Village Dolphin Force personnel allegedly help imposters harass Food Authority officers

Dolphin Force personnel allegedly help imposters harass Food Authority officers

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News Analysis |

On Thursday, January 4th 2018, Saima Akram, a food safety officer from Punjab Food Authority (PFA) registered a FIR against officers of the Dolphin Force and five con artists who were pretending to be journalists, for harassment of her and four other female colleagues.

The FIR was registered at Saddar Barooni police station after five imposter journalists approached them at a bakery located on Adiala Road where Saima and her colleagues were conducting an inspection on Wednesday evening. These five imposter journalists approached Saima and her colleagues and purported to be journalists from private news channels such as Royal News and Khabrain Newspaper.

he provincial assemblies have also passed eight laws for the protection of rights of women in the last three years including Domestic Violence Act, 2013 by Government of Sindh.

They proceeded in accosting statements from the Punjab Food Authority female officers that were recorded on their camera “illegally” since they were neither journalists belonging to the news channels that they claimed to be a part of nor were the PFA officers obligated to provide any media channel with statements regarding their inspection.

The PFA officers were not accompanied by any security personnel because they did not consider that they would be faced with any kind of security threat or harassment while conducting routine inspection at a bakery. When the PFA officers attempted to escape from the vicinity, the five imposters created obstructions and along with members of the Dolphin Force, an elite security unit in Punjab, surrounded their car disallowing them from fleeing the unpleasant scene.

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The purported media persons along with the members of the Dolphin Force began to harass them by knocking on the windows and attempting at opening their car doors. The FIR clearly alleges that the members of the elite security unit, not only supported the five imposter journalists but coerced the Saima Akram to give statements about the inspection to the fake media while threatening them by stating that their car could not exit the area until they complied with these irrational demands.

An official from the Ministry of Human Rights recently stated; “If women are not economically stable and reforms in courts system is ensured, grievances of vulnerable groups could not be addressed”.

The media personnel created further chaos and exacerbated their harassment when they called in other traders to speak on camera creating propaganda against the Punjab Food Authority.

Despite various attempts at Akram and her colleagues to avoid giving statements to the con artists, on the grounds that they were truly working for the Punjab Food Authority and they were not obligated to prove their affiliation or justify their routinely inspection, they were forced to succumb to the Dolphin Force personnel that were in close cohesion with the imposters.

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The FIR contains names of the five imposter journalists and although the report mentions the involvement of the Dolphin Force personnel, specific names have not been mentioned. The TV channels; Royal News and Khabrain have subsequently stated that the imposter journalists have no affiliation with their organizations.

The increased amount of attention that has been given to harassment and domestic violence against women by the law enforcement has further empowered women to speak up.

The City Police Officer (CPO) Israr Ahmed Khan Abbasi has confirmed that an FIR has been registered against the five imposter journalists under the following sections, including Punjab Food Authority Act, 2011, for harassment, obstruction and other charges. He concluded that raids are being conducted to carry out the arrests of the mentioned persons and bring them to justice.

Harassment in workplaces, as well as private and public places, has been a serious issue confronting the economic and personal wellbeing of women in Pakistan. However, the rapid economic and social changes that have taken place in Pakistan in the past few decades have resulted in women being more active in the economy. Along with the increased participation of women in economic, social and political fields, they have gained an unprecedented awareness of their rights to stand up against harassment in any shape, size or form.

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The increased amount of attention that has been given to harassment and domestic violence against women by the law enforcement has further empowered women to speak up for their rights with the firm knowledge that the law stands behind them in safeguarding their rights.

The media personnel created further chaos and exacerbated their harassment when they called in other traders to speak on camera creating propaganda against the Punjab Food Authority.

An official from the Ministry of Human Rights recently stated; “If women are not economically stable and reforms in courts system is ensured, grievances of vulnerable groups could not be addressed”.

There have been significant law reforms in the past few years that have further empowered women by offering them adequate safeguards against harassment while increasing the undesirable consequences for offenders who do not follow these laws.

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The federal government has taken the following steps for ensuring the rights of women in the last three years; Protection against Harassment of Women at Workplace (Amendment) Bill, 2014, Hindu Marriage Bill, 2015,Anti-Rape Laws (Criminal Laws Amendment) Bill, 2013 and Anti-Honour Killing Laws (Criminal Laws Amendment) Bill, 2014. The provincial assemblies have also passed eight laws for the protection of rights of women in the last three years including Domestic Violence (Prevention and Protection) Act, 2013 by Government of Sindh.


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