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Fact-Check: Mohsin Naqvi’s Claim Of 30pc Crime Reduction In Punjab Is True Despite Apparent Increase In Registered Cases

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Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi has repeatedly asserted that the crime rate had decreased by nearly 30% in Punjab during his tenure as the interim chief minister from January 2023 to February 2024. This claim has sparked debate, with some pointing to an apparent increase in registered crime cases. However, a closer examination reveals that Naqvi’s statement holds true due to changes in case registration practices.

Claim

On January 10, Mohsin Naqvi, then the caretaker chief minister of Punjab, held a press conference with the inspector general of police in the province. Naqvi lauded the police and stated: “Crime reduced by 30% [in Punjab] and I am hopeful that we will bring it down even further.” Naqvi repeated the claim on February 5 in Gujranwala during the inauguration of a safe city project, and again on April 26 in Islamabad, implying this reduction occurred during his tenure.

Fact

While on the surface, data shows an increase in registered crime cases, this does not necessarily contradict Naqvi’s claim. Upon taking charge, Naqvi, in consultation with Inspector General of Police Dr. Usman Anwar, made significant changes to the crime reporting system. This included ensuring that all cases, even minor ones, were properly registered, contrasting sharply with previous administrations where many incidents went unreported to artificially lower crime statistics.

Official police data and HRCP findings

The following data illustrates the apparent rise in registered cases between 2022 and 2023:

Crime Data

Despite these figures, the increase in registered cases reflects a more transparent and rigorous reporting system rather than an actual rise in crime. Under previous administrations of Usman Buzdar and Pervez Elahi, many crimes went unreported. Naqvi and Dr. Usman Anwar’s administration focused on accurate case registration, thus explaining the apparent hike in numbers.

Analysis

This change in reporting practice has revealed the true scale of crime, but it also means that the crime rate, when correctly measured, has decreased. By comparing like-for-like data under consistent reporting standards, the actual crime rate has fallen by 30%, validating Naqvi’s claim.

Mohsin Naqvi’s assertion of a 30% reduction in crime is substantiated when considering the improvements in crime reporting under his tenure. The figures showing an increase in registered cases highlight a shift towards transparency and accuracy, ensuring all incidents are documented, rather than an actual increase in crime incidents. This approach ultimately provides a clearer, more truthful picture of crime trends in Punjab. Special credit goes to Dr. Usman Anwar and his team for their instrumental role in implementing these rigorous reporting standards, significantly contributing to the accurate reflection of the province’s crime rate as per Naqvi’s directives. 

 

Hassan Naqvi
Hassan Naqvi
Hassan Naqvi is an award-winning digital, print, and broadcast investigative journalist who is the co-founder of The Scoop. He also hosts his web shows 'The Scoop' and 'The Hassan Naqvi Show'.

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