Sindh CM orders operation to curb street crime in urban centres

Justice (retd) Maqbool Baqar also okays ‘large-scale’ operation in Katcha area of province

APP/News Desk September 14, 2023
Caretaker Sindh Chief Minister Justice (retd) Maqbool Baqar. SCREENGRAB


Caretaker Sindh Chief Minister Justice (retd) Maqbool Baqar on Thursday admitted that the law and order in the province was not satisfactory as people could not walk freely with their mobile phones, emphasising such a situation could not be tolerated.

He expressed these remarks during a meeting of the provincial cabinet held at the Chief Minister House in Karachi.

The statement came amid an outcry over a statement of Sindh’s Caretaker Home Minister (retd) Brigadier Haris Nawaz who advised people of Karachi to keep their cell phones in “places where they can’t get stolen”.

“Keep your mobile phones in those places where they can’t get stolen. Another piece of advice is to keep your phones in hidden pockets," he had said.

Read more: Justice Baqar named as interim Sindh CM

The minister's statement sparked outrage on social media, with many criticising it as a preposterous suggestion.

The chief minister in today's meeting issued directives to the police and law enforcement agencies to curb street crimes in urban areas of the province. He also mandated the initiation of robust operations against street criminals.

The cabinet also accorded approval for extension of Rangers’ stay for another six months in Sindh from September 14, 2023 to February 2024.

Inspector General of Police Sindh, Riffat Mukhtar, provided a comprehensive briefing to the cabinet on the overall law and order situation in the province, focusing specifically on cases of kidnapping for ransom.

He conveyed that in the current year, a total of 218 people had been kidnapped, with 207 of them having been successfully recovered thus far.

During the meeting, the IG informed the cabinet that 11 people were still in the captivity of kidnappers. Among these, seven hailed from Larkana, three from Shaheed Benazirabad, and one from Sukkur districts.

He said that Naveed Lashari was kidnapped from Jacobabad, Sagar Kumar from Garhi Yaseen, Qadeer and Zaheer from Kashmore, Gulbahar from Kashmore as well, Shahid and Jabbar from Sukkur, Soomar from Qasimabad in Hyderabad, and Farhan and Shahid were taken hostage by dacoits in Naushehro Feroze.

Large-scale operation in Katcha area

Subsequent to the briefing, the caretaker government resolved to initiate a large-scale operation against dacoits in Sindh's Katcha region. This operation will be conducted in collaboration with the Pakistan Army, police, and the Rangers, with the aim of eradicating the menace of kidnapping innocent people.

Also read: Unusual spike in street crimes irks citizens

CM Baqar directed the IGP and other law enforcement agencies for early release of all remaining hostages from their captors.

He instructed the IGP to maintain communication with the family members of the hostages and keep them informed about the ongoing efforts aimed at securing the release of their loved ones.

There are 238 villages in Sindh’s Katcha area where eight police stations and 20 police checkposts were established by the Sindh Police to provide security to the people, the cabinet was told.

The interim chief minister also asked for the posting of honest and reputable police officers in the Katcha area and those who could not perform well should be removed from the posting.

The CM also sought detailed reports regarding the status of 11 hostages and ordered the authorities to start construction work on Ghotki – Kandhkot bridge over the Indus River so that the law and order situation could be improved.

All ministers, advisors, special assistants to CM, Sindh Chief Secretary Dr Fakhar Alam, IG Riffat Mukhtar, Principal Secretary to CM Hassan Naqvi, Advocate General, Prosecutor General and other concerned officers attended the meeting.


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