It is a sad reflection on the state of law and order in Karachi that a strike called by the fired workers of the KESC, that should have been peacefully conducted, with mere sloganeering, turned dreadfully violent. At the end of the day, several parts of the city had descended into chaos that claimed the lives of five innocent people, including one Ranger. Reports that armed men on motorbikes were freely going around the streets and firing shots to force the traders to shut their shops needs to be investigated. There is a perception that these thugs were hired to make the strike successful by hook or by crook. It is extremely sad and shocking that a 60-year old man and a young man standing on a bus stop were shot dead. Also arson attacks by the strikers resulted in a most vicious burning of nine public transport buses and other public property. They were reduced to ashes. No doubt the issue of KESCs fired staff has dragged on for too long and one expected that negotiations ought to have settled it, yet no one has the right to throw the entire city into turmoil to express grievance. There also have been reports that some of the political groups based in the city exploited the situation on Friday and directly instigated bloodletting. The police and other law enforcement agencies need to gird up their loins. They are hardly to be seen when lawless elements are roaming about the streets and harassing people to close down their shops. It is little wonder that with an atmosphere of crime, the city once called as the hub of business activity is fast turning into a commercial graveyard, which has dire implications for the countrys economy. The KESC issue must be resolved at the earliest. Given rampaging inflation and unemployment, the workers demand for reinstatement should be looked into seriously. The Sindh government must itself come forward to find a way out of the crisis.