KARACHI: A day after the Rangers conducted a raid at the Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s headquarters Nine Zero and arrested dozens of activists, at least 27 suspects were presented before an anti-terrorism court on Thursday.
Contrary to earlier reports that suspects not involved in any criminal cases would be released, the Rangers plans to detain the 26 suspects on a 90 days preventive detention while a joint interrogation team (JIT) is also likely to be formed for further investigation.
Rangers claimed that they apprehended nearly half a dozen target killers – including Faisal Mehmood, aka Mota, who was condemned to death by a court over his involvement in the murder of television journalist Wali Khan Babar.
MQM’s coordination committee member Amir Khan is also in the custody of Rangers for investigation.
Nadir Shah who is also convicted and sentenced 13 years imprisonment, Farhan Shabbir alias Mullah, Amir, Ubaid K-2 and Nooruddin Subhani are among the 26 alleged targeted killers arrested during a series of targeted raids at surrounding areas of Nine-Zero on Wednesday.
Later during the day, Rangers handed over three MQM workers, to Azizabad police after no evidence of criminal activities was found against them during investigations.
Early on Friday morning, 19 more detainees were released, including Ghulam Subhani.
The workers were identified as Pervez Alam, Khurram and Azeem and are members of MQM’s information department. They will be released after completion of formalities.
Earlier today, explaining the reasons for conducting the raid on MQM headquarters, Rangers spokesperson said the paramilitary force had information that Nine-Zero has become a no-go area.
“We also knew that the criminals were present on the premises, ” he added.
The spokesperson further said that the raid was carried out on the orders of the Supreme Court and under the powers granted to Rangers by the federal government.
Earlier today, Corps Commander Karachi Lieutenant General Naveed Mukhtar also visited Sindh Rangers Headquarters in Karachi and met Sindh Rangers Director-General Bilal Akbar who briefed him on the law and order situation in the city.
He also inspected weapons that were seized in various targeted operations yesterday including those recovered from MQM headquarters.
Mukhtar appreciated the efforts of Rangers officials in successfully carrying out operations in the city.
Karachi security situation
Business activities resumed in Karachi a day after Rangers’s early morning raid on Nine-Zero during which they arrested several people and seized a huge cache of weapons.
Petrol stations, markets and education institutions including Karachi University remained closed till early morning.
Unidentified men had also set a bus on fire in Korangi No 5 in the early hours of the day.
An Express News Screengrab of the bus.
Trade union announced that it will make sure that the trade centres remain open.
MQM’s Raabta Committee had claimed Rangers personnel forcefully raided and ransacked the MQM’s head office.
Further, five criminals arrested during the raid yesterday are expected to appear before an anti-terrorism court in Karachi.
The miscreants include Faisal Mahmood alias ‘Faisal Mota’ – the convicted killer of Wali Babar.
“No suspects have been released as yet,” a Rangers officials said.