SHIKARPUR - Several suicide attacks and other incidents have made Shikarpur district one of the most sensitive districts in Sindh.

Apart from suicide attacks, NATO oil tankers have also been torched in the district.

Therefore, Closed Circuit Television [CCTV] cameras had been installed a couple of years back on the recommendations of Shikarpur Police so that the activities of terrorists and criminals could be monitored.

After the suicide attack on Central Imambargah Karbala Moula at Lakhi Gate during Friday prayers in January 2015, which had claimed at least 60 lives and left 80 others injured, 58 CCTV cameras had been installed at main points of the city, but with the passage of time these stopped functioning due to some technical problems.

Sarfraz Ahmed, CCTV cameras’ control room operator, while confirming that the cameras were not operational, said that UPS of the control room was out of order and had been sent to Karachi for repair, while the complete control of CCTV cameras’ had not been handed over to police so far. He told that police would be in-charge of these cameras after Eidul Azha.

However, Deputy Commissioner Shikarpur Syed Hassan Raza Shah denied that police was yet to take complete charge of these cameras, and added that police was already in-charge of these cameras whereas in this regard one control room had been established at police headquarters, and now it was the prime responsibility of police department to handle it. He further said that the upgradation of these cameras would be sanctioned in the current fiscal year. SSP Shikarpur Umar Tufail, while replying to a question on CCTV cameras, said that he was on special duty and would call later, but he did not call back.

Sikandar Ali Dal, a Shia leader, expressed serious reservations over the lack of security measures, adding most of these cameras were out of order despite the fact that millions of rupees had been spent on them.

He further said that due to lack of security measures, the community’s volunteers will perform duties on the eve of Eidul Azha at imambarghas because last time, a suicide bomber had blown himself up on the eve of Eidul Azha while his accomplice had been nabbed by local people in Khanpur tehsil of Shikarpur.

It is worth mentioning here that Shikarpur police has not chalked out a security plan to cope with terrorists, criminals on the eve of Eidul Azha.

People of Shikarpur demanded the higher authorities take notice of out of order CCTV cameras so that police could keep an eye on anti-state elements.