LAHORE - Lahore police have started minting money from motorcyclists in the name of snap-checking at the police pickets set up in every nook and corner of the provincial metropolis, thanks to the SSP (Operations) who ordered a crackdown against the motorcyclists.

Lahore SSP (Operations) Rana Abdul Jabbar on Thursday ordered the police to step up physical and snap checking at pickets to check the movement of miscreants and suspects.

A police officer said on Friday that the police impounded at least 500 motorcycles on since Thursday night as massive crackdown is underway against the motorcyclists roaming on city roads without number plates or registration books. He also claimed that more than 100 police pickets are set up across the provincial capital to check the movement of suspected elements ahead of major events taking place in Lahore including the visit of Turkish Prime Minister and Chehlum of Imam Hussain (RA). Police said that hundreds of bikes were impounded by the local police as the motorcyclists failed to produce registration books during surprise checking.

However, the citizens blamed the police for multiplying miseries by setting up surprise pickets. They said that the cops are minting money in the name of checking. “If you pay them Rs100, the policemen will let you go. Otherwise, the motorcycles are impounded,” Muhammad Ahmed, a resident of Samanabad said. He also pointed out that the policemen never stop car-riders at the picket and only the poor motorcyclists are always taken to task. He said that the police also released hundreds of bike after accepting bribe on the spot.

A resident of Township, Sadiq, said that the police are multiplying miseries of innocent citizens in the name of checking. “The policemen behave rudely at pickets and it seems that the City has become a police state,” he added.

Nauman Khan says that extra check-posts and security arrangements always agitate commuters and other people because they cause hindrance in the regular flow of traffic. He said that the police should implement a proper strategy by using human intelligence to counter-terrorism rather than creating problems for the masses.

The citizens have appealed to the Punjab Chief Minister to take serious notice of police highhandedness and help provide relief to the public.