Areas in Karachi 'no go zones': Police chief tells SC

No go zones
Karachi, Aug 29: Vicious armed gangs are waging a savage battle for supremacy in the Pakistan's commercial hub Karachi in which 306 people have been killed in the last one month and many areas of the city have become "No go zones", the Sindh police chief told the Supreme Court.

Painting a grim picture of the law and order situation in the port city, police chief Wajid Durrani told the court that more than one ethnic groups were involved in the violence, which has thrown life out of gear in the city of 18 million multi-ethnic populations.

Filing a report before the court as directed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, Durrani admitted that general public and even police cannot move freely in several areas which have now come to be known as "no go zones."

The police chief's appearance in the court before the chief justice came as Chaudhry has taken a suo motu notice of the spiraling violence in the city and asked security agencies to file a report.

The chief justice has also sought reports from the country's main spy agency ISI and other civilian agencies by Tuesday, Aug 30.

The police chief told the court that as many as 32,000 policemen had been deployed in 112 police stations in the violence hit city.

Giving details of the losses, Durrani, when asked by the chief justice, said that 17 bodies were found in bags of which throats of eight had been slit.

He said 78 vehicles were torched in 146 clashes between armed groups over a period of a month. Durrani also said that police had rounded up 20 target killers. 

Durrani said besides ethnic and sectarian elements, gangs of land grabbers and those extorting money from the traders are involved in the violence.

He informed the court that a total 232 cases had been registered of various crimes in a month time.

Besides the police report, the Federal Investigation Agency and a police intelligence agency also presented their reports and the Attorney General requested the court that certain sensitive parts of the reports should not be made part of court record and should also not be released to the media.

But the Chief Justice said that the court will have to make reports part of the record for writing verdicts.

The Chief Justice asked the police chief if the investigators ever asked any recovered person as to who or which group had kidnapped him.

The police chief replied that the recovered men were so terrified that they were unable to record statements.


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