GPS on sale at Pakistan’s Bara market

GPS on sale at Pakistan’s Bara market

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The Karkhano market on the outskirts of Peshawar, popularly known as the Bara market, is known for trade in smuggled goods. On sale at the market now is electronic equipment that may become a security threat if it falls into the wrong hands. The GPS is a satellite navigation system that makes it possible for people with ground receivers to pinpoint their geographic location and help them reach their destination.

Although developed for US military, it is available for general use around the world and mostly used by journalists and mountaineers. The equipment can also be used by terrorists, a security official told Daily Times. “GPS is wonderful equipment but its sale must be regularised to ensure that it does not fall into the wrong hands. Unfortunately there is no record of its users,” said the security official, who asked not to be named.

A number of varieties of Taiwan-made GPS are available on the Bara market. A shopkeeper at the Bara market told Daily Times that the price of one unit was between Rs 12,000 and 24,000. He said that he wasn’t concerned that it might fall into wrong hands. “My sole concern is for myself and family,” he added. The market is offering unrestricted sale of satellite phones as well.