Karachi violence: For police, Lyari gangsters prove a hard nut to crack

Published: April 30, 2012

According to an unofficial count, 40 people have been killed since April 2 when police moved into the maze of Lyrai’s streets to hunt down criminals and gangsters active there. PHOTO: IRFAN ALI/FILE

KARACHI: As the death toll continues to climb in a police operation in the densely-populated Lyari neighbourhood of Karachi, gangsters regained control of areas which the police claimed to have cleared on Saturday.

On Sunday, police had to pull back from the Nawa Lane and Afshani Gali areas after day-long fierce battles with gangsters who used heavy weapons, including rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs), hand grenades and the locally-made ‘Awan’.

Four people – among them a police constable and gangster – were killed in fresh fighting. The two other fatalities were those of an ice vendor and a passerby who were caught in the crossfire.

The dead gangster was identified as Sajid, alias Gabbar, the brother-in-law of Baba Ladla whose group is the target of the ongoing police
operation. Another 28 people were wounded including two police officials – Deputy Superintendents of Police Abdul Razzak and Nawaz – and ExpressNews cameraman Arif Ali.

According to an unofficial count, 40 people have been killed since April 2 when police moved into the maze of Lyrai’s streets to hunt down criminals and gangsters active there.

Provincial police chief Mushtaq Shah said that they would call out the paramilitary Rangers, if the need arose.

The road between the Cheel Chowk and Ghas Mandi Chowk areas is crowded with police vans, armoured personnel carriers (APCs), trucks and media persons. Around 1,500 policemen are taking part in the operation.

Gangsters have destroyed almost all pickets and checkpoints set up by police in the streets of Lyari.

Meanwhile, three FIRs were registered on Sunday in different police stations for Saturday’s attack on the house of PPP leader Nabeel Gabol, killing of SHO Fawad Khan and attacks on police officials. The leadership of banned Peoples Amn Committee (PAC) and Lyari gangsters were nominated in the FIRs.

Meanwhile, SHO Fawad Khan, who belonged to Chamkani, a suburban area of Peshawar, was laid to rest in his hometown on Sunday.

The body of Khan, who died on Saturday while fighting gangsters in Lyari, was flown to Peshawar on Sunday. Hundreds of people attended the last rites of the fallen police official.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 30th, 2012.

on Twitter, become a fan on Facebook

Reader Comments (11)

  • Sami
    Apr 30, 2012 - 6:38AM

    The operation is only aimed at Uzair Baloch because in the past week he decided to leave PPP and he wants to contest against PPP in Lyari in next elections and after this development this situation developed. This operation is politically motivated to root out Uzair Baloch to protect PPP in Lyari.

    Recommend

  • Sajida
    Apr 30, 2012 - 8:11AM

    Becoming like Latin America.

    Recommend

  • Apr 30, 2012 - 10:01AM

    Oh Much more the big gangsters live there they have made torture cells & much more .

    Recommend

  • Khalil
    Apr 30, 2012 - 10:30AM

    The operation is on political ground or not but its tactic is not right and these type of operations should not perform in so thickly populated areas instead it should be in form of surprise attacks.

    Recommend

  • Ahmer Ali
    Apr 30, 2012 - 10:40AM

    Now only army and rangers can control the current situation and clear the area from the terrorists by combined operation in Lyari against the terrorists.Police have failed badly.Please now call army and rangers both and conduct operation against the Lyari’s terrorists like Swat.

    Recommend

  • maz3tt
    Apr 30, 2012 - 10:43AM

    how does rocket launchers got here. off course with the help of police. ye mulk kabhi theek nahi hanai wala

    Recommend

  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Apr 30, 2012 - 11:31AM

    The gansters should be eliminated by all means to restore the peace in Lyari and Karachi.

    These gansters have made the innocent people hostage and the life has become stand still.

    A similar opeartion is also needed wherever the gansters exists in Karachi to bring peace.

    Recommend

  • rehmat
    Apr 30, 2012 - 12:07PM

    @Sami: “This operation is politically motivated to root out Uzair Baloch to protect PPP in Lyari”

    If Uzair BAloch’s gang is able to fight a team of 1500 policemen, then clearly he is not as innocent as you seem to be indicating him to be.

    Recommend

  • Lord
    Apr 30, 2012 - 12:51PM

    Go cut the head . Wipe these criminals out.Keep it up .

    Recommend

  • Mumtaz.Rizvi
    Apr 30, 2012 - 3:57PM

    The amount of resistance shown by the terrorist gang is the result of armament done by the former interior minister of sindh ” Zulfiqar Mirza” despite the tooth and nail efforts from police personnel’s they are still struggling to get the complete hold of any specific area of liyari. The failure of police will result in swat like operation

    Recommend

  • danish ali ahmad
    Apr 30, 2012 - 8:39PM

    @mumtaz rizvi- bravo for posting the truth.
    Its SHOCKING why this WHOLE media is silence on this Zulfiqar Mirza help to all these terrorist.

    He had claimed “if people of amn comitte are criminals than i am also criminal”.
    He also claimed to provide weapon license for 3 lakh people, who knows who were they.

    And now we have RPG, hand grenade tossed on Police.
    WHY CJ is quite?
    someone should file a WRIT or a petition to INVESTIGATE Zulfiqar Mirza

    Similar operation is needed in ANP areas too, coz they in hand in glove with Zulfiqar Mirza!Recommend

More in Pakistan