KARACHI: The Sindh government on Thursday extended for one month the mandate and powers of the Rangers given under the Defence of Pakistan Act and the National Action Plan (NAP) to continue the operation in Karachi.The extension was given as the federal government gave an assurance that the reservations of the Sindh government would be addressed.
It is to be mentioned here that the Rangers mandate and powers expired at 12:00 am on Wednesday night and the new notification giving a one-month extension was issued to ensure continuity in the Rangers’ role in the port city. The last notification was issued on March 8, 2015.
Well-informed sources said Minister for Interior Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan contacted Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah on telephone and told him that the extension in the powers of the Rangers was necessary to bring Karachi’s targeted operation to its logical end. The sources said that the Sindh chief minister informed the interior minister about the reservations of the Sindh government over certain actions of the Rangers and the recent operations of NAB and the FIA.
The sources said that the interior minister gave an assurance to the Sindh government that its reservations would be taken care of.The chief minister said thatthe Sindh government supported the actions against corruption, but the institutions should work according to the law and their mandate. He reminded that the operation against terrorism would have negative effects if the actions were taken against the writ of the civilian government.
Sources said DG Rangers Major Bilal Akbar would meet the Sindh chief minister and inform him about the operations.Sources also said that Sindh chief minister, in connection with extension of the Rangers’ powers, also consulted Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari. The chief minister met Bilawal Bhutto Zardari at Bilawal House on Wednesday while he spoke to Asif Ali Zardari on telephone. He informed them about his talks with Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan and the assurances he had given.