A meeting at the Sindh chief minister’s residence on Monday was informed that certain militant groups, especially the Taliban were collecting extortion money or “bhatta” in Karachi.
The meeting was jointly chaired by Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah and Federal Interior Minister Rehman Malik.
Since the police had no facility to trace callers who are threatening citizens for extortion money, the federal government asked the Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited to supply a Call Detail Record (CDR) to the respective IG police.
The meeting also decided that more areas of Karachi will be patrolled henceforth, including highways, to prevent extortion crimes.
It was claimed that the Taliban’s involvement in such crimes, particularly against the business community, has been witnessed. However, Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah said that with the concerted efforts of the police, Rangers, law enforcement agencies and the general public, the law and order situation had rapidly improved in the city.
Malik said that the objective of criminals was to destabilise Karachi. He warned the target killers, ‘bhatta khors’ and the ‘perchi mafia’ of fierce action if crimes were not curtailed.
The meeting was further informed that 133 ‘bhatta’ collectors had been arrested by the police and Rangers from January to August. Furthermore, over the last few months, 55 policemen and two rangers were martyred in action against criminals. It was also decided that paramilitary forces will take action against Taliban dens and other criminals while exercising zero tolerance.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 7th, 2012.
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