Interior Minister Rehman Malik claimed on Thursday that there is a Swat-like situation in Lyari where militant groups, separatist groups from Balochistan and the Taliban are operating.
Disassociating the government from the Peoples Amn Committee, he said: “We have nothing to do with the PAC. These are criminals who want Lyari to be like Swat and Malakand and want to break Pakistan. We will not let them succeed in their nefarious designs.”
The interior minister made the remarks while addressing a joint press conference with Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah, Sindh Information Minister Shazia Atta Marri and police officials at the CM House following a law and order meeting.
He said that Rangers would come into action today (Friday) by establishing check posts at all entry and exit points in Lyari.
Giving an ultimatum, Malik said that all houses from where rocket launchers and anti-aircraft guns are recovered would be set on fire.
Malik also offered “amnesty” to those willing to lay down their arms within 48-72 hours. If not, he added, the government will take strict action against them.
He announced that mobile services would be restored within three hours and said he had asked for the electricity and water supply in the areas also to be restored. “Ninety per cent of the people (in Lyari) are innocent; we do not want them to suffer.”
He added that they have asked for four helicopters to assist in the operation in Lyari, while 36 digital cameras will also be set up.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 4th, 2012.
More in PakistanWorld Press Freedom Day: Decree against TV channel welcomed