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July 31, 2020

Gulshan-e-Maymar sub-inspector becomes fourth police martyr in four weeks

Karachi

July 31, 2020

Exactly a week after an assistant sub-inspector (ASI) was murdered in the Lines Area neighbourhood, a sub-inspector has become the fourth police official to be martyred in four weeks in Karachi, casting serious doubts on the efficacy of the investigation into these incidents.

Sub-Inspector Yar Muhammad, 45, was on his way home to Quaidabad on Thursday night after completing his duty at the Gulshan-e-Maymar police station, when a pillion rider on a motorbike shot him in the chest near the Northern Bypass. He was taken to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

The sub-inspector had been posted at the Gulshan-e-Maymar police station after his transfer from the Model Colony police station around six months ago. He was a father of seven and hailed from Punjab.

Sindh police chief Mushtaq Mahar has taken notice of the incident and sought a detailed report from District Malir SSP Irfan Bahadur, ordering him to arrest the culprits.

Previous attacks

On July 3, Police Constable Noman Ali was shot in Mehmoodabad on his way home after work. On July 11, Head Constable Asghar Ahmad, 35, was riding his motorbike when the pillion rider on another two-wheeler shot him near Bappan Park in the Korangi No. 5 locality.

He suffered critical injuries and fell off his motorcycle. The suspects escaped with his pistol. The injured policeman was taken to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC), where he passed away on July 13.

The following day, Police Constable Muhammad Hanif was critically wounded in a firing incident in the Babar Market locality, which falls in the Landhi police station’s jurisdiction. He was taken to the JPMC. On July 23, an ASI was murdered in Lines Area after the policeman identified himself to his assailant. The attack was carried out in the Jut Line (Jutland Lines) locality, which falls in the Brigade police station’s jurisdiction.

The deceased police officer was identified as 50-year-old ASI Ghulam Muhammad. His body was taken to the JPMC.

Police said the ASI was posted at the investigation wing of the Artillery Maidan police station. They said the officer was a resident of Lines Area and was attacked at a paan shop in the same locality.

Quoting witnesses, the police said the attacker had approached the officer and shot him after asking his name. Police said the ASI breathed his last on the spot, while the assailant escaped with his target’s official weapon.

Police and Rangers cordoned off the area to hunt for the attacker, but no development seems to have been made so far. The investigators also obtained the CCTV camera footage of the attack.

An FIR was registered at the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) police station under Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act. Police chief Mahar ordered District South SSP Sheraz Nazeer to submit a detailed report on the incident.

SSP Nazeer said the police are looking into the nexus of the elements operating in the city with the backing of India’s spy agency Research & Analysis Wing (RAW), including a political party and separatist groups.

Interestingly, the assailants escaped with the official weapons of the previous three policemen martyred this month in the Mehmoodabad, Korangi and Lines Area gun attacks.

Karachi has witnessed some half a dozen targeted attacks on police officials this year, and in majority of these incidents, the assailants took off with the official weapons of the deceased, suggesting that the same group may be behind these incidents.

Besides the attacks on policemen, a retired Rangers officer was martyred in a grenade attack at his bakery in the Sachal area, while a man and his nephew were reportedly killed by a separatist group in the Garden neighbourhood.

The city also witnessed the foiling of an act of terrorism late last month, when a separatist group of Balochistan backed by RAW had attacked the Pakistan Stock Exchange.

The law enforcement agencies have not been sitting idle, as they have intensified their actions and arrested a number of suspects, particularly those belonging to the separatist groups of Balochistan as well as those of Altaf Hussain’s Muttahida Qaumi Movement-London.

On July 22, the CTD had arrested five militants associated with the banned sectarian organisation Lashkar-e-Jhangvi as well as claimed to have recovered a hit list from them. According to the list, the organisation’s target killing teams were to attack police and other law enforcement officials in Karachi.