KARACHI   -  Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa has appreciated Rangers and other law enforcement agencies for maintaining peace in the mega city.

General Bajwa expressed these views during his visit to Pakistan Rangers Sindh Headquarters in Karachi on Saturday where Rangers Sindh Director General Major General Muhammad Saeed gave a detailed briefing about the security situation of the province in general and law and order situation of Karachi in particular.

“COAS Bajwa appreciated efforts of Pakistan Rangers Sindh and all other law enforcing agencies for improved security environment,” reads a press statement issued by ISPR Karachi. “Karachi is the engine of national economy and we shall further improve its security environment so that positive business trajectory is maintained,” the statement added.

Commander Karachi Corps Lieutenant General Humayun Aziz accompanied the COAS.

The army chief’s visit to Karachi came a day after a bomb blast in the city on Friday night killed two people and injured a dozen others. The bomb disposal experts also succeeded in defusing another heavy bomb near the site of the first blast, which happened in the city after a long time following Rangers operation with the help of the police.

According to SSP District Malir Irfan Bahadur, the terrorists had planted two separate improvised explosive devices under the fruit carts in Quaidabad, adding one of them was exploded with a loud bang while the other was defused.

City peace was blast’s  target: Murad

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Saturday said that he cannot comment on the nature or target of the Quaidabad blast till the completion of the investigation. “Two people were killed, while 12 others were injured in the blast and one is said to be in critical condition,” the CM confirmed, while talking to the media in Karachi.

“Investigation into the incident was underway to know the intensity, nature and target of the blast. Till the investigation is complete we cannot say anything,” Shah said. He termed the attack an attempt to disturb peace and harmony of the metropolis, adding that the perpetrators would be put behind the bars soon.

Responding to a question, the Sindh chief minister further shared that they have acquired land for a forensic lab. “We are trying to build a lab in Sindh but in the meantime will seek help from other provinces,” he said.

The Sindh Rangers and police have been busy conducting Karachi operation against the criminal and terrorist elements since September 5, 2013 following the rising incidents of targeted killings, extortion and kidnapping for ransom that claimed hundreds of lives.

Rangers have also been given special powers during the Karachi operation. Before these powers, the situation in Karachi was very disturbing, especially the menace of terrorism and target killings, which were at their peak.

Since the Karachi operation kicked off, a major crackdown was launched against the criminal and terrorist elements in the city, which led to sharp decline in the cases of target killings, extortion and kidnappings for ransom as well as terrorism for over 90 percent.

Apart from the actions against the target killers and terrorists, the law enforcers, especially Rangers launched a crackdown against Lyari gangsters. During the crackdown, many were killed and arrested that includes notorious gangsters Uzair Baloch, Baba Ladla and Ghaffar Zikri.

Rangers are also playing their vital role in curbing street crimes and have so far been arrested number of street criminals during various raids and operations in parts of the city. The paramilitary force have so far been arrested over 2,500 street criminals and handed them over to the police for further action.

According to the statistics of the Karachi operation, the Rangers have so far been conducted over 14,000 raids in which some 11,100 criminals were arrested and handed over to the police with 13,000 weapons and thousands of bullets.  Rangers also arrested 2,200 terrorists, 1,847 target killers, 799 extortionists and 200 kidnappers.

Furthermore, the paramilitary force rescued 155 people from abductors. In 2013, there were 57 incidents of terrorism and in 2014 they increased to 66, but then major operations decreased the figure to 18 in 2015 and 16 in 2016, following which only one incident of terrorism occurred on Friday night in Quaidabad in which two people were killed and 10 others were wounded in a bombing.

As for target killings, 965 people fall victim in 2013, but the number has been decreasing since then: 602 in 2014, 199 in 2015, 89 in 2016, 45 in 2017 and only six this year. There is also a massive decline in the cases of extortion as about 38 incidents of extortion have so far been reported in current year while 1524 were reported in 2013.

Similarly, there is also a massive decline in the cases of kidnapping for ransom.

 

COAS vows even better security for Karachi

 

ALI OUSAT