Transport unions blocked M A Jinnah Road at Taj Complex for about 30 minutes on Saturday evening in an attempt to force authorities to arrest the culprits behind the May 25 attack on a passenger bus near Qazi Ahmed.
They also discussed the security problems faced by the transport vehicles which travel on the motorway and National Highway. The protesters shouted slogans, demanding the immediate arrest of the culprits, at least Rs1 million as compensation to the families of the eight killed people and protection to transport vehicles traveling on the Motorway as well as National Highway.
The Sindh Air Conditioned Bus Owners Association (SACBOA) and other transport unions warned the authorities of dire consequences if their demands were not met. “We are giving [the government] till 11 am on Monday to meet our demands. If they do not comply, we will block the National Highway and not let anyone to pass through,” said Malik Riaz Awan, the chairman of the association. “This protest is like the trailer of the film which will be shown at the Superhighway on Monday if the government does not listen to us. It has dodged us for the past four years and we can’t tolerate it any longer.”
The chairman of the Karachi Transport Ittehad (KTI), Irshad Bukhari, said that the organisation will support the SACBOA in the protest if their demands were not met. “The police should arrest the culprits immediately,” said Bukhari. The protesters also said that a driver and conductor of the attacked bus were in police custody and that they should be released.
They transporters formed a joint committee of 10 members containing representatives from all the big unions, including KTI, SACBOA, All Pakistan Oil Tanker Owners Association and Karachi Goods Careers’ Association. The committee will discuss their issues with the authorities and try to resolve their security problems.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 27th, 2012.