(MENAFN- Pajhwok Afghan News) TALOQAN (Pajhwok): Thirty-two police vehicles are being used by unauthorised armed groups for personal purpose in northern Takhar province, an official said on Sunday.
Governor Fazlullah Mujadidi told Pajhwok Afghan News powerful individuals had either been given the vehicles by their lackeys or they had taken them from police by force.
Without naming anyone, Mujadidi said the vehicles were being used unlawfully by former officials or individuals who had personal militias and armed groups.
He alleged some policemen in Takhar, particularly those based in districts, had been serving the interests of powerful individuals.
€œMost of policemen have been at the disposal of former officials of the province or unauthorised people. As a result, the number of policemen serving the masses or maintaining order has declined.€
Mujadidi€™s comments on unauthorised local militias and the illegal use of police vehicles by them come at time when civil society activists are increasingly concerned at the government€™s silence on the issue.
Munir Ahmad Hadaf, head of civil society organisations in Taloqan, the provincial capital, told Pajhwok the police force and their vehicles were being misused for illegal activities.
He claimed a large number of police vehicles were at the disposal of unauthorised armed groups, who took unfair advantage from them.
He added: €œThe police personnel and vehicles have been provided to powerful individuals, illegal armed groups and relatives of some deceased officials. They are also provided with logistic support and fuel.€
Abdul Samad, the resident of Taloqan, said most of the time civilians were seen driving police vehicles in cities, streets and districts.
€œI have witnessed family members of former officials driving police vehicles and creating to picnic among the people. They fire at civilians and bother the public but the government supports them,€ he regretted.
Meanwhile, MoI€™s deputy spokesman Nasratullah Rahimi admitted that police vehicles were being used by some former officials and unauthorised groups in the Takhar and other provinces.
He recalled an announcement made two weeks earlier that all such vehicles would be surrendered to the ministry. Similar misuse of government vehicles in Kabul has created problems for the people.
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