Islamabad - Like their compatriots elsewhere in the country, capital police have also added a golden chapter in their history written with blood of their martyrs.

This was stated by Minister for Interior Ahsan Iqbal while addressing passing out ceremony of the personnel of newly-established Counter-Terrorism Force (CTF) at Islamabad Police Lines on Tuesday.

“The nation, armed forces, police and other law enforcement agencies rendered great sacrifices in the war against terror. Besides sacrificing thousands of precious lives, the country’s economy also suffered losses of more than 100 billion dollars,” he said.

The minister said that the courageous role played by security personnel and police had won hearts of the people as the brave custodians of law and order prevented many disasters by timely nabbing terrorists. The brave policemen of Islamabad, no doubt, had left the scene after performing their specific roles but the perennial mark they left upon the face of society would continue to mould spirits of their successors to follow their path with a renewed commitment and fervour, he said.

Ahsan said that successful actions by the security forces had weakened networks of terrorists who were on the run. “We made National Action Plan and launched a full-fledged operation against the terrorists which would continue till complete annihilation of terrorists and extremists,” he resolved.

“Peace is very much important for development as oxygen is necessary for life,” he said, adding that societies having instability and insurgency could not meet the pace of progress”.

The minister said the police were not only doing their own duties but were also playing a vital role in development of the country. He said that it was the police which performed their duty day and night so that the citizens could sleep without any fear.

Congratulating the CTF on completion of the training, Ahsan said he that was pleased that women had also become part of the force. Women, he added, were also playing an active role in fighting terrorism. The minister said that selection of the CTF personnel was made on merit and were trained by the army to keep them abreast with modern needs.

He said that an anti-riot police force had also been formed to ensure law and order in Islamabad. Ahsan said that terrorism was common enemy of Pakistan and other countries of the region and Pakistan was striving for lasting peace in the region in collaboration with international partners.

Ahsan was of the view that it was an age of innovation where changes took place frequently, saying “We need to develop ourselves as per requirements of the world because nature of today’s challenges is global and challenges have no boundaries”. He said that the country’s economy was weak in year 2013 when no one was ready to invest in Pakistan, but now it was making progress, he claimed, adding that all economic indicators were showing positive improvements.

Earlier, Inspector General of Police Islamabad Sultan Azam Temuri said that an action plan was being prepared to improve performance of the police within minimum time. He said that of the total 970 personnel of the CTF, first batch of 380 had been passed out. They have been imparted training by the SSG officers, he said, adding that 21 vehicles for the CTF had been arranged while the remaining 22 would be delivered soon.

Later, the interior minister witnessed the parade as well as live demonstration of the CTF snipers. Logo of CTF was also awarded to the minister.

Temuri said that according to national action plan, an independent counter terrorism force was set up, in which 970 officers and jawans were sanctioned. In 1st phase, 252 constables were recruited while 128 officers from different ranks were taken on deputation from Islamabad Police.

These 380 officers and jawans were given specialised training in Elite Training School, Bedian where they were given training on the pattern of Punjab counter-terrorism department. Out of these, 45 officers have been trained on intelligence from Intelligence Bureau Academy in Islamabad.

In 2nd phase, 294 constables were recruited whose training is undergoing. This force have separate residential block where they will be shifted soon, the IGP said.