2 hand grenade attacks and a blast 14 more killed in Karachi

Naimat Khan

KARACHI: The extortionists and terrorists, reining the troubled metropolis for quite some time now, again challenged the writ of the provincial government and Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) when they attacked the houses of two transporters, killed a trader and blew up a hotel apparently for nonpayment of extortion money. The unabated target killings also remained continued on Wednesday.

Two persons, identified as police constable Zahid s/o Abdullah and hotel’s owner Sadiq Shah s/o Guldad Shah were killed in a blast in the New Muzaffarabad Colony of Landhi Town. Eleven others including a child and two women also wounded in the explosion.

Two different theories surfaced after the attack. While the people of area and police said the owner and his hotel was attacked for refusing to fulfill the demand of extortionists, others think the attackers wanted to target the constable who was part of the police intelligence.

According to SP CID Mazhar Mashwani an explosive device, of three and half kg, being installed at the footpath had been detonated with a remote control.

At least 12 other persons including a policeman and a doctor were also killed by the unknown assailants in the troubled metropolis on yet another bleak day when the LEAs appeared nowhere.

According to police officials, two men were shot dead in Sherpao Colony of Landhi who were later identified as Syed Balawal Shah and Syed Baqar Shah. Sources told that both, driving their car No. AEE/199, were workers of a religious party.

Unidentified gunmen killed ASI Mukhtiar Ghuman in Ittehad Town area of Baldia Town while he was on his way to Saeedabad Police Station on his motorbike. In another incident, faceless attackers opened fire at Dr Zubair in his clinic in Zia Colony of Korangi. He died after receiving bullet shots.

The extortionists shot dead local trader Asif in Boltan Market and managed to flee. Traders shut their businesses and protested over the killing of their fellow. In another incident, a man was killed in Ferozabad area of the metropolis. However his identity couldn’t be ascertained.

The target killers killed a person in Rashidabad area of Baldia Town. He was later identified as Abdul Ghafoor s/o Piyar Ali. Abid Raza shot at Napier road also succumbed to his injuries during treatment.

A man identified as Taqveem was gunned down in Rizvia Society, Nazimabad. Unidentifiable dead body packed in a bag was recovered in the precincts of Sohrab Goth Police Station while a man was targeted in Ahsanabad, Federal B Area. According to police officials a man died after being attacked with dagger by unknown persons in the Block-13 of Gulistan-e Jauhar. However he couldn’t be identified till filing of this report.

Deputy Director KDA, Athar Abbas was attacked by unknown assailants riding on motorcycle in the precincts of Liaquatabad Police Station, leaving Abbas and his driver severely injured. Both were rushed to Abbasi Shaheed Hospital for treatment.

Earlier in wee hours at around 2:15am several shops, a mosque and few houses were damaged when unidentified men attacked residences of two transporters with hand grenades in Mianwali Colony in Karachi.

Transporters claimed they had been attacked by the extortionist who had demanded Rs. 20 million as extortion money. As many as 8 shops and bakery situated on the ground floor of the house were also damaged as a result of the attack. Luckily no human loss was reported in the attack.

Police said that the purpose of the attack was to damage the residence and shops of Haji Rattas Khan Niazi, a local transporter. Later in the morning, the residence of former Union Council (UC) Nazim Haji Aurangzeb was also attacked following his refusal to pay Rs5 million extortion money.

Published on December 13, 2012

http://www.thefrontierpost.com/article/196792/

 

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Lives of 1000 students under threat

Naimat Khan

KARACHI: Extortionists pose a significant threat, this time, to the lives of some 1,000 students and teaching staff at a charity institution in Surjani area of the city, showing the total failure of the government to uproot the menace of lawlessness.

The menace of extortion continues to plague the country’s financial hub with street and coordinated target killings, which after triggering panic amongst the traders and business community, now creates discontentment at welfare academia in the metropolis.

 

Amid tall claims by the government on peace efforts, its key law enforcing departments including Citizens-Police Liaison Committee (CPLC) and the Sindh Police Forensics Division have failed to clamp down on anti-social elements.

The national exchequer feeds the government’s law enforcers with huge funds annually with a primary view to ensure peace and economic stability in all provinces, but the Sindh government is more willing to shrug off the citizens’ protection responsibility. The citizens however will continue to pay taxes so that the government’s luxuries could not disrupt.

Wahid Ali Rehmani had been running a charitable school, a religious seminary and a hospital which are established inside a single compound for the last 18 years.

Everything was smooth but suddenly calls of “unidentified” persons shocked him as they demanded rupees one million as extortion money. He felt it the last day to end his nearly two decades of peace.

Rehmani unlike other million of citizens in the city pinned hopes on law enforcing institutions which apparently are harnessed with technology and on upper social stratum because of his relationship with them to get rid of his unwanted problem.

Renowned playwright, Fatima Surayya Bajia stepped up to call chief of CPLC, Ahmed Chinoy for helping Rehmani. Immediately, he approached the CPLC in a bid to trace the extortionists and bring them to justice. But, the CPLC unexpectedly disappointed him.

The ordeal spurs his problems to escalate. The law enforcers deactivated the extortionists’ cellular numbers. But, the effort did not end the problem. The outlaws now began calling him from new cell numbers but their demand was still the old one.

On his revisit to the CPLC, an official told him that they only can do this. Rehmani finally found his expectations to die. There may be any reasons which made the culprits to remain beyond the law enforcers’ grip after a passage of 75 days.

When The Frontier Post contacted, the chief of the CLPC strongly denied the claims of Rehmani, saying his organization was not working to resolve the problems of complainants. He added “the phone numbers are closed after getting all necessary information”.

Chinoy said the LEAs with the help of CPLC had apprehended many extortionists, adding that there were three possible ways of action, which could not be made public for fears that outlaws would be alerted.

The Sindh Police Forensics Division in Garden area refused to extend him any help citing the reason that the CPLC has deactivated the cell numbers of criminals permanently.

“I then went to Sindh Police Forensics Division but was told that since the numbers are closed, the criminals can’t be arrested”. The Digital Forensics Science Laboratory at the Sindh Police Forensics Division has recently obtained two devices, the CellXtract-TNT and the UFED Touch Ultimate.

During the last 75 days, Rehmani’s troubles have not been reduced. The extortionists resorted to aerial firing on Nov 16 to press their threats and warned him of the dire consequences. The threats also left his students scared.

Last month, Rehmani received bullets of AK-45 with a clear warning which read as “this is the last warning, if you did not give us extortion money, the students and administration of school shall prepare for bearing dangerous consequences”.

Rehmani who lodged complaints with Mangopir Police Station and CPLC has now appealed to the Sindh Governor, Federal Minister Interior, Home Secretary, DG Rangers, IGP Sindh Police and CPLC Chief to protect lives of a thousand of students and teachers through a stern action against the extortionists.

Published  on December 20, 2012

http://www.thefrontierpost.com/article/198042/

 

PR to lose another profitable passenger train

Naimat Khan

KARACHI: If the mismanagement, lack of sufficient number of engines and train buses, continuous loss and rampant corruption in the organization was not enough, the management of Pakistan Railways is planning to handover another money-spinning project to the private sector which will deprive Railways of another income source, it was learnt on Monday.
According to reports, the management of Pakistan Railways has decided to privatize another passenger train, Karachi Express, this month. The train, which runs between Karachi and Lahore with a fine standing, will be handed over to a private firm after necessary redecoration and repairs, sources told The Frontier Post.
The Karachi Express is considered the last passenger train which brings sufficient income for the Pakistan Railways (PR), said the sources. But the project will be handed over to the company running a “Business Train” which had been a bad experience for Pakistan Railways. The private company is defaulting millions of rupees to Pakistan Railways (PR) but the management of PR is going to privatize another passenger train this month.
Refuting the news report of deal with the company operating ‘business train’ the Railways officials claimed that the new passenger train would be run by a private company, Air Rail Service (ARS) (Pvt) Ltd, which is already running ‘Shalimar Express” on Lahore-Karachi route. The official concerned rated the ARS better than the firm operating BT.
But irrespective of the fact that the train is going to be handed over to good or bad company, the rational behind kicking out cost-effective train of the PR family is still subject to stern scrutiny. If the project is doing well then what’s the reason of selling it out? Why not to privatize the trains running with loss? These are vital questions which the sources privy to this report asked and the officials were unable to answer.
Sources inform that the project after being privatized will be renamed as ‘Shalimar-II’ which is likely to be inaugurated by the end of this month in Lahore. The train will not offer fare concession to railways’ employees and others that are presently enjoying the discount. The fares will be much higher for the middle class commuters to afford.
Muqadar Zaman of the Railways Mazdoor Union while talking to The Frontier Post termed it yet another move towards the privatization of Pakistan Railways and adding that employees will not allow the railways to go into the hands of profit-earning private companies at the behest of World Bank and other international credit agencies.
He appealed to Prime Minister, Minister for Railways, Chairman and GM Railways to halt the process of privatization of important and profitable train, the process which he said was harmful to the Pakistan Railways, its employees and also railway passengers.

 

Published on January 25, 2013

http://www.thefrontierpost.com/article/197667/

4 killed, 42 injured in Karachi explosion

Naimat Khan

KARACHI: The New Year in the violence-hit metropolis started with a blast on Tuesday killing four and injuring 42 others.

The explosion that occurred in the parking area set up for the participants of public gathering of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran (TMQ) in the Azizabad Ground near headquarters of MQM.

The jalsa that concluded just before the blast was addressed by MQM chief Altaf Hussain and TMQ chief Allama Dr. Tahirul Qadri.

The explosion that was heard several kilometers away occurred when a bomb planted on a motorcycle parked near buses went off resulting in panic in the area and worst traffic jam at the surrounding roads.
Three buses and several vehicles standing near the motorcycle were damaged by the blast while motorcycle used in the blast was completely destroyed. The explosion also damaged nearby buildings and shops.

An eyewitness said the explosion occurred when the MQM workers were about to board their buses after attending the jalsa.

Officials at Abbasi Shaheed Hospital said they had received more than 30 injured people and three of them were in a serious condition. However, Sindh Health Minister Sagheer Ahmed told media that as many as 4 were killed and 42 others injured in the explosion.
Police and Sindh Rangers cordoned off the area and began collecting evidence after the blast. Police officials told the media the bomb was planted in a motorcycle parked near a maternity home in the parking area. SP Police, Imran Shaukat told 2 kg locally-manufactured explosive had been used in the blast.

Meanwhile, President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Raja Parvez Ashraf, Governor Sindh Dr. Ishratul Ebad Khan, CM Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah and PML-N Chief Nawaz Sharif, JI’s Liaquat Balooch, ANP’s Shahi Syed and other leaders had condemned the blast. MQM Chief while flaying the blast said such cowardly acts could not stop MQM for its struggles for revolution.
Moreover, the Sindh Information Minister Sharjeel Inam Memon had condemned the blast and termed it a conspiracy to destroy the peace of Karachi. He said the government was taking steps for halting the act of terrorism, however, the masses would also have to come forward for eradicating the menace.
He informed the Chief Minister Sindh had taken notice of the blast and summoned a report from the IG police.

Published  on January 2, 2013

http://www.thefrontierpost.com/article/200237/

CI foils shipment of seven falcons

Naimat Khan

The Customs Intelligence on Thursday foiled another attempt to ship seven rare falcons at Karachi Airport which were supposed to be airlifted to a Gulf country.

Police on Tuesday had thwarted similar attempt when it, after getting reports from local journalists, detained a consignment of an unspecified number of falcons and other bird species at the Hyderabad Airport.

The Costumes Intelligence lodged an FIR of the Thursday attempt in Karachi and took the falcons in its custody. Meanwhile, sources informed The Frontier Post that several raids were being conducted in Karachi to impound many of the species which are reportedly kept somewhere in the DHA area of the city.

http://www.thefrontierpost.com/article/193378/