Sindh police have started investigating the alleged involvement of land and water mafias in the murder of Orangi Pilot Project (OPP) former director Perween Rehman in Karachi last year. A report submitted by the DIG Crime Investigation Department (CID) Karachi, Sultan Ali Khowaja, states that two other OPP officials were attacked after Rehman’s murder and the modus operandi seemed to be the same.
The report says the DIGs East, West and South Zones Karachi have been requested to provide a list of land mafia members operating in their respective zones so they can be interrogated. “The scope of the investigation will be widened after the receipt of this list,” the report states. Rehman was vocal in her protest of the land mafia operating in Karachi.
According to the report, a letter has been sent to the director Hydrants Karachi Water and Sewerage Board requesting a list of illegal hydrants in use in Karachi so those utilising such hydrants can be interrogated as well.
“It has been learnt through a reliable source that some notorious criminals of the area wanted to have a place in the Karate Club within the premises of Orangi Pilot Project Office. The source also divulged that Bilal Tension was the main extortionist and killer of the area having strong links with Rahim Swati. Bilal Tension is involved in five cases and facing trial before the courts,” the report also states.
The report adds that after obtaining NOCs from the courts where Bilal Tension is facing trial, his remand has been sought from Anti-Terrorism Court No II Karachi from July 5 to July 19 for interrogation in Rehman’s murder case.
The DIG has asked the investigation team to record the circumstances under which the encounter with Qari Bilal, accused of involvement in Rehman’s murder, took place. The team has been asked “to establish a link between Qari Bilal and other absconding culprits and accomplices to make all out efforts to arrest them so Qari Bilal’s involvement and motivation can be established or denied on factual grounds”.
The DIG has also asked the investigation team to make efforts to arrest accomplices of Bilal Tension, who is under remand. The team has been asked to look into the background of Mushtaq Mohammad, a leader of the ‘hydrant mafia’ now deceased, to ascertain if he played any role in Rehman’s murder.
Last week, the top court directed the provincial government to constitute a Joint Investigation Team to probe the case and submit a report within one month.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 15th, 2014.
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