Karachi: Early morning today Karachi police arrested three terrorists in an encounter in Manghopir area of the city. The terrorists were arrested when they opened fire on a police mobile. These arrested terrorists are believed to be members of a banned organization. Weapons have also been recovered from them..

Meanwhile, the Sindh Rangers have said that the first stage of the ongoing security operation in Karachi has been completed which was initiated by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on September 5, 2013, to root out crime and terrorism from the megalopolis.

In a statement issued today, “Pakistan Rangers Sindh successfully completed the stage-I of the operation and are well prepared to start stage-II from August 14, 2015 till the time it is successfully completed.”

This is the first time that the paramilitary forces have officially admitted that the operation, which has so far lasted for over 23 months, would be stage wise.

“Stage-II will be more severe than stage-I as the main task would be to hunt down land grabbers, target killers, extortionists, kidnappers, terrorists.”

 However, it is still not clear how stage-II differs from stage-I given that land grabbers, target killers, extortionists, kidnappers and terrorists have already been the focus when the operation first began in 2013.

“Pakistan Rangers Sindh is committed not to spare any criminal… Do not worry even if the criminals are very powerful because Pakistan Rangers Sindh are more powerful,” the statement added.

According to a performance report released in July, the Rangers had claimed to have conducted 5,795 raids during which they had apprehended 10,353 suspects and recovered 7,312 weapons and 34,8978 rounds of ammunition. Prominent among the raids conducted were the ones on Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) headquarters Nine-Zero and the offices of Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA). The report added that a total of 826 terrorists, 334 target killers, 296 extortionists were arrested during this period. The Rangers also expanded their sphere against kidnappers, arrested 82 abductors and secured the release of 49 people from their captivity.

The Rangers also traded fire with criminals, engaging in a total of 224 “encounters”. In these ‘encounters’, Rangers said that they had killed 364 suspected criminals and arrested 213 others. The report further claimed that target killing in the city had dropped drastically by over 80%, with attacks dropping to under 10 in June 2015 after having peaked at 73 in December 2013.