Showing concerns over rising street crime in Karachi, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leaders have demanded empowering the paramilitary Rangers to launch a crackdown against the outlaws in the metropolis, while the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan has asked the Supreme Court to take notice of the situation and form a high-level inquiry committee to resolve the issue.
Haleem Adil Sheikh, leader of the opposition in the Sindh Assembly, made the demand for giving powers to the paramilitary force as he talked to media persons after paying a visit to the bereaved family of a street crime victim, Shahrukh Saleem, a newly-wed man who was killed by a mugger for resisting a snatching bid outside his home in PECHS on Wednesday.
“It is really heart-wrenching for a mother to see her young newlywed son die before her own eyes,” said Sheikh, who is also a central leader of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). “Saleem was a high-spirited young man and an active political worker of the PTI who sacrificed his life for securing his mother.”
Sheikh said that owing to the worsening law and order situation across the province, particularly in its capital city, it had become inevitable to call in the Rangers for enforcing the law and maintaining order. He also stressed the need for a wide-scale operation against criminal elements to curtail the rising crime incidents and to protect citizens from the outlaws.
He said the Sindh police had completely failed to maintain law and order and ensure the safety of the citizens, as evidenced from the rising incidents of heinous crimes in which innocent people were losing their lives day in and day out.
The opposition leader said the Sindh Police’s Special Services Unit was reserved for VIP security, while personnel deputed at police stations in Karachi were busy in committing corrupt practices, receiving extortion money and protecting land grabbing, while robbers and snatchers were roaming freely to target law-abiding citizens.
He also alleged that the PPP’s Sindh government’s “corruption, favouritism and political interference in the police department” had rendered the civilian law enforcement agency ineffective, and the law and order situation in the province was out of control.
Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, who is also holding the portfolio of home minister, and Murtaza Wahab, who has been overseeing the prosecution department for six years, should consider themselves answerable to the people of the province, where outlaws are taking three to four lives every day, besides the occurrence of numerous crime incidents, he said.
The outlaws were free of fear of law as they were not apprehended for their wrongdoings, and even if they were caught they were freed within a short span of time due to flawed investigations and feeble prosecution, he remarked.
Sheikh said that in his constituency, some robbers were caught by citizens and handed over to the police, but after a few days those outlaws were freed and they murdered one of the citizens who had confronted them.
The MQM-Pakistan also showed its concerns over the “alarming” rise in street crime, saying the PPP’s Sindh government had lost its writ and failed to curb the menace of street crime.
“The situation has become so serious that robbers have resorted to firing and killing people during snatchings, and even elderly people, women, youths and children have not been spared,” said the party’s coordination committee members in a statement. They said the biased provincial government had been limited to verbal claims and statements.
The MQM-P leaders also asked the higher judiciary to take notice of the rising street crime in Karachi and set up a high-level committee to probe the reasons behind its rise.
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