Another twelve people were killed in Karachi as the country’s financial hub continued suffering in a new wave of violence on Sunday.
The port city remained under a spell of fear on Sunday as the violence, which started on Saturday with at lest 20 killings, continued claiming more lives throughout the day, resulting in commercial and business activities remaining close to nil.
The latest spree of killings has raised fear among the people and observers that the situation might get out of hand ahead of Muharramul Haram.
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah visited police stations in disturbed areas and warned police officers to improve performance or face action. He gave a severe warning to DIG South over his poor performance and said incidents of killings in his jurisdiction would not be tolerated. Interior Minister Rehman Malik also spoke to Shah over telephone and exchanged views over the law and order in Karachi. Malik asked the chief minister to start targeted action against the miscreants.
Sindh Information Minister Sharjil Memon said police and Rangers had been ordered to target miscreants involved in targeted killings. In Sunday’s killings, a father and his two sons were gunned down by unidentified men in Orangi Town. They were identified as Jarar Hussain, Imdad Hussain and Sajjad.
Police said the body of a person who was shot dead was found beneath Banaras Bridge. Ajmal Khan was gunned down in Metroville area, while another body was found from Sarrafa Bazaar in Mithadar. The man had also been shot dead.
A mutilated body, identified as Akhtar Hussain, was recovered from Muahammad Ali society, as another man was gunned down in the city’s SITE industrial area. In a firing incident in FC area of Liaquatabad earlier, a man was killed and five others were injured. Meanwhile, a clash in Sohrab Goth between two rival armed groups left eight people injured, including a reporter for a local television channel and an Edhi ambulance driver.
Police and rangers reached the scene and tried to control the situation, leading to a shootout and clashes in which windowpanes of several vehicles were shattered. Sunday’s bloodshed followed Saturday’s violence, one of the deadliest days in the city in recent past wherein at least 20 people were killed.
Most of Saturday’s killings were linked to sectarian violence, while it was unclear whether Sunday’s killings were also part of the current wave of sectarian bloodshed in the city.
But Sindh Inspector General Fayyaz Legahri said sectarian strife was being fanned in the metropolis ahead of Muharram.
Talking to a private TV channel, Legahri said police had conducted a targeted operation in several areas of Karachi, adding that disturbances were being reported in Orangi Town, West and Central Zones of the city.
He said violence in Soharb Goth erupted following a clash between two groups and additional forces of Rangers and police had been deployed to the area.
Leghari appealed to ulema and religious scholars to play their role in bringing peace to the city.
He also issued directives to all DIGs and SSPs to take counter-terrorism measures to prevent further killings in the city.
Later, police claimed to have arrested at least nine criminals from different parts of Karachi.