New York police officers reach out to Lahore police, students

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In a program sponsored by the U.S. Consulate General in Lahore, two New York City Police Department (NYPD) officers visited Lahore on October 29, where they met with local police officers and students from both the University of Management and Technology and the Consulate’s English Access Micro-scholarship Program.

Lieutenant Adeel Rana and Detective Elvis Vukelj from NYPD’s Community Affairs Bureau met with 20 senior officers from Model Town Division, the largest division in the Capital City Police of Lahore (CCPL). The officers discussed how the NYPD implements community policing programs and learned about similar programs administered by the CCPL.

“The Capital City Police are doing impressive work here. I was glad to learn about their Community Friends initiative,” said Lieutenant Rana, who is Pakistani-American and also the president of the Muslim Officers Society in New York. “Involvement of the community is important in fighting crime,” Rana said lauding the CCPL initiative in which every police office is tasked with making three friends in the communities they serve.

Lieutenant Rana and Detective Vukelj had an interactive talk with the students and faculty members at University of Management and Technology. They also spent time with the students of English Access Microscholarship Program from Lahore and Kasur, where they discussed how students can play an important role in building relationships between the police and the community. “In New York, my colleagues and I engage with young people by organizing summer camps and sports activities,” Vukelj said.

The NYPD officers were here as part of their eight-day visit to Pakistan funded by the U.S. Government to exchange knowledge with Pakistani law enforcement professionals about concrete and productive relations between the police and the communities they serve.

The U.S. government invests more than $30 million each year in grant programs that promote cultural exchange between the United States and Pakistan through sports, visual and performing arts, women’s empowerment, entrepreneurship, and a variety of other areas. Additionally, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) has a long history of cooperation with Pakistani police. Since 2002, INL has provided assistance to police in all four of Pakistan’s provinces and Islamabad; levies in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA); and federal law enforcement organizations. INL projects have focused on areas such as developing training curricula, enhancing the capacity of female officers, and building operational capabilities.