Three years ago, Karachi lost its greatest protector. Feared by terrorists, gangsters and thugs alike, Chaudhry Aslam was a death sentence for any criminal who crossed his path. But on one fateful Thursday afternoon, his enemies beat him at his own game.
As today marks his third death anniversary, we take a look back at 14 moments of anger, camaraderie and wit from his life.
Message to his attackers
Not known for mincing his words, Aslam lashed out in full force at militants who attacked his house in Karachi in 2011. Though he and his family remained unhurt in the bomb attack, at least eight people including police guards and two civilians were killed.
Death of his comrades
When two of his policemen were killed in an attack targeting him, Aslam vowed to avenge their death and continue his fight against religious militancy in Karachi, come what may.
Aslam was known by many names – ‘baba police’, ‘yaaron ka yaar’; but he was most infamously known as Karachi’s encounter specialist. For a police force notorious for staging fake encounters, Aslam was believed to be the undisputed king of the game.
Chaudhry’s ‘certain law’
Very few policemen who took part in a security operation against Muttahida Quami Movement in the 1990s survived after the party gained power. Aslam was one of them and many believed it was because he had made a deal with the devil. He, however, rejected all such claims of making compromises and asking for forgiveness.
TTP and Islam
As Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan continued to butcher people in Karachi and the rest of the country, Aslam vehemently denounced them as barbaric and un-Islamic.
In 2012, when a simple raid turned into a ten-day-long siege of Lyari, Aslam assured the public that the delay was to ensure no innocent life was hurt in the neighbourhood battle.
Sacrifices for Pakistan
Being the toughest cop in the toughest city comes with a price and for Aslam, this meant living with death threats from his political and religious enemies.
Targeting the system
A formidable face of Karachi police, Aslam believed he was targeted by militants not because of who he is but because of what he stands for.
Surviving attack on house
When a car packed with 300kg explosives blew up and destroyed a large part of his house, Aslam said he has miraculously survived because he has a mission to complete.
After Aslam’s neighbours objected to him living in their area, the ‘iron man’ gave them a lesson on his citizenship rights and cleverly explained why their demand was illogical in so many ways.
Always on the frontline, Aslam stood along with his officers when they fought criminals and militants. A 30-year veteran of police service, he took pride in his work and his policemen.
War on terror
Aslam believed Karachi police were fighting a war beyond their mandate and that they should be recognised for their sacrifices in the face of an unwavering enemy.
A cigarette in one hand and a 9mm Glock pistol in another, Aslam had a unique sense of style. Always dressed in white starched shalwar kameez, he had his sleeves rolled up till his elbows – be it summer or not.
United front against TTP
Acknowledging militancy as a multi-faceted threat, Aslam called on the people to join hands with security forces to fight TTP in Karachi.
AUDIO SOURCE: PRESS CONFERENCES AND INTERVIEWS AIRED ON DIFFERENT NEWS CHANNELS