Improper disposal

August 14, 2022

Russian-made explosive device detonates at police headquarters

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ack of adequate training and due diligence at Sindh Police continues to have tragic consequences. Recently a Russian-made hand grenade exploded at Garden police headquarters in Karachi, causing random deaths and injruies.

Two officers were killed and two were seriously injured in the incident. “The incident occurred on August 3, at 11:15am when police personnel were moving sensitive material from the armoury due to the heavy rainfall,” says District South DIG Sharjeel Kharal. Kharal says such movement of sensitive materials is a routine activity.

Two Russian-made hand grenades were brought to be defused. While one of the grenades was successfully defused, the other one exploded, killing Constable Sabir Hussain and Constable Muhammad Shahzad and seriously injuring Sub-Inspector Saeed and Constable Ali Gohar. The injured are undergoing treatment at the Civil Hospital. DIG Kharal says, “The hand grenade was case property. Generally case property cannot be transported without appropriate paper work. The incident will be investigated… further inquiry is required to determine responsibility.”

Two Russian-made hand grenades were brought to be defused. While one of the grenades was successfully defused, the other exploded, killing Constable Sabir Hussain and Constable Muhammad Shahzad and seriously injuring Sub-Inspector Saeed and Constable Ali Gohar.

Initial investigation of the incident by the Bomb Disposal Squad revealed the sequence of events. According to a BDS report, the grenades had initially been kept in the warehouse without being defused. The report says that the consequences could have been dire. These grenades contain 65 grams of explosive with a total weight of 500 grams.

The investigation so far indicates serious negligence. Apparently the inexperienced staff wanted to do the job themselves. Generally, defusing is not required. If such weapons become dangerous, they are repaired/ defused either by the manufacturer or a bomb disposal expert. In this incident, the staff apparently tampered with the bomb and that caused the explosion. The warehouse contains highly sensitive materials that are illegal under the SOPs to move except under the supervision of an experienced officer and a bomb disposal expert.

A police officer said it was not clear where the grenades came from.

The Bomb Disposal Squad has recently seized 68 hand grenades manufactured by the Pakistan Ordnance Factory (POF) that have become dangerous. It is also holding 266 mortar shells.

The squad has requested that these be handed over to the Pakistan Army for safe disposal.

DIG Kharal says an investigative team has been formed to look into the incident. It includes South District SSP Asad Raza, Investigation SP Asif Bugheo and SP Sadar Ali Mardan.


The writer is a Karachi-based journalist



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