In what appears to be preparation for targeted action, the Rangers have been beefed up in troubled areas of the city with parts of Orangi town cordoned off including Katti Pahari.
According to details received early Wednesday morning, Rangers, who had already been deployed in increasing numbers in the city had cordoned off Katti Pahari, Gulfamabad, Qasba Colony and adjoining areas with no one allowed to either enter, nor exit these areas.
Rangers had set up pickets and increased snap checking of motorists in Orangi, Banaras, Mangopir, Surjani, New Karachi, Shah Faisal, Landhi, Qaidabad, Old Sabzi Mandi, Hasan Square, Gulistan-e-Jauhar, Gulshan-e-Iqbal and Abul Hasan Ispahani road.
Updated from print edition (below).
Tackling crime: FC to be given police powers
In an attempt to stem the haemorrhage, the government has decided to give Frontier Constabulary (FC) special police powers but they will remain in reserve until needed.
This and other decisions were made on Tuesday at two separate meetings at Chief Minister House and the Crisis Management Cell. Federal Interior Minister Rehman Malik and Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah chaired the meetings. Officials from the intelligence agencies attended.
“Enough is enough and the government cannot further tolerate this,” said Malik. “The people of Karachi will now see strict action against these terrorists.”
The government will offer Rs5 million in reward money for information leading to the arrest of target killers.
Anyone who can identify a target killer with photographs or video shall be rewarded Rs10 million and his or her identity shall be kept secret. An operation is planned in several areas in three days along with aerial surveillance. The DIGs and SSPs will visit police stations twice a week and submit a report to the IG of Police.
Sindh Inspector General of Police Wajid Ali Durrani told the gathered officials that 91 target killers have been arrested and they have admitted to 191 murders so far. The working of each SHO will be under scrutiny. The IG will periodically submit reports to the chief and home ministers on the performance of SSPs, DSPs and SHOs. They also decided that as some criminals work under the umbrella of some political parties, the police will verify their claims. Community police will be given more preference.
Rehman Malik issued yet another ‘public’ warning to the killers. “Your mentors cannot save you from government action,” he said.
The Rangers have been given orders to conduct operations in some areas.
For his part, Rehman Malik stated that the government was going to take “extraordinary measures” to restore peace and normalcy in Karachi. “The government will not allow anti-state elements to destabilise the country,” he said. “People know who the miscreants are. Now even our mothers and children are being targeted. We are fully determined to take stern action against miscreants and outlaws who want to destabilise the country.
“Everything has a limit, enough is enough. We are going to take extraordinary measures to restore peace and normalcy in Karachi. We will bring peace in Karachi at all costs and no one would be allowed to take the city hostage at gunpoint,” he vowed.
He was talking to the media after chairing a meeting at the National Crisis Management Cell. Malik said 26 people were killed on Monday across Karachi by terrorists who targeted all groups of people, including Urdu-, Pashto- and Seraiki-speaking people. “We are fully committed to taking action with force against the law breakers. A strategy has been prepared to take action against 90,000 Afghan nationals living in Karachi with fake documents. The authorities would also check illegal Bengali immigrants in the city as well.”
with additional reporting from PPI
Published in The Express Tribune, August 3rd, 2011.