KARACHI - Police claimed to have shot dead five militants, while four operatives of a banned outfit were apprehended here on Wednesday.

As many as five suspected militants were killed during an encounter in Sohrab Goth area. Being tipped off, extra contingent of District Malir police led by District Malir SSP Rao Anwar rushed to carry out the raid. The police team cordoned off the suspects’ hideout at Qayyumabad area in Sohrab Goth. The militants offered resistance and during exchange of fire, five militants sustained bullet wounds and died on the way to hospital.

This was the first major operation carried out in the District Malir since Rao Anwar reappointed as District Malir SSP. Anwar was reappointed as SSP Malir during the second week of December 2015. Earlier, he was suspended by the provincial government following a controversial news conference in which he had arrested the MQM workers for their alleged link with the Indian spy agency – RAW.

The District Malir police led by SSP Anwar had killed more than 100 militants belonging to Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, al-Qaeda and Lashkar-e-Jhangavi since the Karachi operation began on September 5, 2013. “We conducted a raid on intelligence-based information at the hideout of militants,” said SSP Anwar. “Before we could arrest them, they resorted to indiscriminate fire compelling us to call more police force to counter them.”

As many as five suspected militants were killed during an exchange of fire that lasted for at least one hour while some of their accomplices managed to escape under the cover of fire. Their bodies were later shifted to morgue in Sohrab Goth after completing medico-legal formalities at Abbasi Shaheed Hospital. Two of the accused were later identified as Naeem and Abdul Hafeez while rest of others have yet to be identified.

Sohrab Goth SHO Aziz Shaikh said though no one from their heirs approached them yet, however, they managed to identify two of the accused with the help of an informer. He said that Abdul Hafeez was the TTP chief for Sohrab Goth area and his accomplices had been involved in various cases of terrorism, particularly the attacks on police and Rangers.

However, the police official was unable to share details of the case in which the terrorists were involved. The officer also claimed to have recovered nearly 10 kg explosives and weapons to be used in some major terrorist activity in the city. Further investigation was underway. Separately, four more suspects were apprehended after an exchange of fire with police in Defence Phase I. The arrests were claimed to be made by the Defence police. The suspects were identified as Hanif alias Nadeem Kala, Ashraf alias Bholo, Rehmat and Zahid.

The police officials also claimed to have recovered one kg of explosives and weapons from the militants, saying that they were plotting a terrorist activity in the city. However, the police officials were unable to share proper details about the arrests when approached.

Meanwhile, Sindh police has decided to file review appeals for cancellation of bails of all such accused, presently on bail, who were involved in high profile/terrorism cases. A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting held under the chairmanship of IG Sindh Ghulam Haider Jamali.

The meeting was attended by Additional IG Karachi Mushtaq Ahmad Mehar, Zonal DIGs and AIG Operations Sindh.

The IG Sindh reviewed in detail the investigation progress of the cases under trial in various courts and analysed the conviction rate. He urged the need to use modern techniques during the course of investigation. He also went through different recommendations for ensuring a comprehensive Policing Plan-2016. He directed to minutely analyse crime pattern and strategies during 2015 and come up with more exhaustive policing plan. He stressed upon the police officers to fortify steps to curb street crimes, and a periodical report to this effect be submitted for perusal.

According to the spokesman, the IG Sindh also evaluated the measures being adopted to counter sectarian violence. He directed to revive the peace committees comprising of religious leaders of all sects and have regular meetings to address possible issues.