Karachi, Aug 20 : With the arrest of three persons, the Karachi Police have unearthed a graveyard scam in which the employees of Sakhi Hasan graveyard dug up old graves, sold away their skeletons and also the graves to new "customers" for anything between Rs11,000 and Rs15,000.
Burial of dead bodies was banned in the graveyard in 2003, but some undertakers there used to arrange burials against payment.
Consequently, a raid was conducted at the graveyard during which the police arrested three suspects - Khadim Hussain (assistant contractor of the graveyard), Yar Mohammed (watchman) and Riaz (grave digger) - and took them to investigation unit.
The suspects revealed that they used to dug up the old graves and handed over skeletons and bones to Ghani and Ghafoor who sold them to some unknown party. The last such sale of a grave was made on August 16. The suspects further disclosed that about 300 people worked at the graveyard. They watered graves. On August 18, they again attempted to make such a sale but were caught by the police.
The suspects further revealed that they kept an eye on old graves and then painted the tombstone black before removing it. But, if nobody turned up, they broke the grave and buried a new corpse.
SPO Khan said that they have seized the records and files recovered from the custody of graveyard watchman Yar Mohammed, a resident of Mianwali Colony. Mohammad had worked at the graveyard for the past eight years, and had been in the business of selling old graves for the sake of money.
Assistant contractor of the graveyard Khadim Hussain, a resident of Nusrat Bhutto Colony, confessed that he had been working on the instigation of suspected contractors, Ghani and Ghafoor.
Another suspect Riaz (grave digger) admitted that he committed the crime of destroying graves and burying new corpses there around 200 times.
Further probe is underway and the investigation staff of the Shahrah-e-Noor Jehan police station has been conducting raids for the arrest of the remaining suspects.