The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government has decided to raise 34 new units of Rapid Response Force (RRF) to fill the void created by the departure of the several units of the security forces previously deployed in various parts of the province, according to a media report.
The report stated that it will cost Rs505 million to set up 34 new units of RRF, a standby force of highly trained police units to react and respond in events of organised armed assault by terrorists or in a hostage situation. The force was formed in April 2014.
A summary for raising the new units, submitted to the chief minister, states that pullout of security forces earlier deployed in the province and moving to the eastern border created void, which needs to be filled up on urgent basis.
In this regard, a meeting on law and order was held earlier in August this year, wherein Chief Minister Mahmood Khan approved raising of about 34 units of RRF. It said that the new units would be in addition to the existing 28 units of the force.
The summary said that to raise 34 new units, it would require to recruit of 1,462 personnel. Of this, there would be 1,088 constables, 102 head constables, 68 assistant sub-inspectors, 31 sub-inspectors and 170 drivers.
It said that RRF was initially established with 24 units in 11 most vulnerable districts of the province from the existing Elite Force back in April 2014.
A unit of RRF comprises a sub-inspector, an assistant sub-inspector, four head constables and 40 constables. Each member of the unit is equipped with individual arms and ammunition including an assault rifle, sidearm, protective gear, individual night vision device, handset with accessories and searchlight. In addition to this, each unit is also equipped with additional logistics, such as rocket-propelled grenades, sniper rifles, HMGs, gas guns, portable ladders and other tools for clearance and breaching operations.
The summary said that later those units were increased from 24 to 28 to meet the challenge of militancy and functioning throughout the province. It said that police department intended to expand the capacity of the force due to the developing security situation in the province by establishing more units.
The summary said that due to the shortage of personnel in the Elite Force, it could not meet the RRF personnel manpower requirement for additional units. It said that due to this reason, for the additional units, the required number of 1,462 posts had to be sanctioned. “The total financial implication for the creation of 1,462 posts comes closer to Rs505 million per annum,” it added.
RRF personnel undergo rigorous nine-month training and its units are commanded by officers of the superintendent of police ranks. The force remains engaged in mock exercises and operations at various sensitive and vulnerable places throughout the year.