Power Outages Hamper Pakistan Surveillance Cameras Work

Outages hamper surveillance cameras work

Karachi, Pakistan: After spending more than a billion rupees on video surveillance of the city, the Sindh police are finding it hard to operate some 800 cameras round the clock amid frequent power outages with the result that sometimes footage of high-profile attacks remains unavailable to them. Sources said the police had asked K-Electric (KE) to exempt the surveillance system from loadshedding which the power utility claimed was not possible due to technical reasons as well as the long default history of the law-enforcement agency.

The sources and officials at the two organizations suggested that recent arrangements to operate the ‘video surveillance system’ were needed to be upgraded for the desired results.

The question emerged in the wake of a statement by Sindh IG Iqbal Mahmood that the video surveillance system could not record footage of the attack on journalist Hamid Mir on Sharea Faisal on April 19 as the cameras were not working at the time of the incident.

“The attack on Hamid Mir was carried out at the airport- Sharea Faisal intersection,” said an official. “Actually there was no camera on that particular site but definitely there are cameras on the route which was later mentioned by the media where attackers were seen moving. However, their footage could not be captured due to loadshedding that frequently affects the system across the city.”

The official said the Sindh police were finding it hard to manage the round-the-clock operation of the surveillance system as loadshedding complaints had increased with the rise in temperature and the voltage fluctuation affected its backup power supply system also.

“The Sindh police have installed UPS [uninterrupted power supply] with each set of cameras across the city but they never get charged properly due to voltage fluctuation and at several places the problem has destroyed the system’s cabling and other equipment,” said the official.

Source: dawn.com