Security personnel on toes for Youm-e-Ashur

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The Rangers and police have made heavy deployment of force to provide foolproof security to processions to be taken-out today all over Sindh. Since there are over 216 most sensitive areas, therefore deployment of 64,414 policemen and 7,408 Rangers personnel has been finalised.

This was disclosed in a high level law and order meeting, held here under the chairmanship of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah, to review final security arrangements for 10 Muharram procession at the CM House on Friday.

Those who attended the meeting include Home Minister Sohail Anwar Siyal, Chief Secretary Siddique Memon, DG Rangers Major General Bilal Akbar, IG Sindh Ghulam Hyder Jamali, Principal Secretary to CM Almauddin Bullo, Home Secretary Mohammad Waseem, Adl IG Karachi Mushatque Mahar, Adl IG CTD Sanaullah Abbasi, Adl IG Special Branch Sultan Khwaja, provincial heads of intelligence agencies and others.

The chief minister said: “After the two incidents of Balochistan, we have to be more alert. All the agencies, including police, Rangers and intelligence have to make coordinated efforts to provide foolproof security to the processions of Muharram,” he said.

Sindh Rangers Director General Major General Bilal Akbar briefed the meeting and said keeping in view history, size and intelligence reports, he had identified 79 vulnerable points in the city where 4,663 Rangers personnel had been deployed.

He further said that in Jacobabad, Shikarpur, Sukkur and Khairpur 104 vulnerable points had been identified. “We have deployed 1,518 Rangers force in Hyderabad and Mirpukhas divisions and 1,227 in Northern areas of the province,” he said, adding the sector and wing commanders would personally lead the forces.

The DG Rangers also said that he had intensified operation against the terrorists in which most important arrests had been made. “Since investigation process was in progress; therefore, their details would be shared in the next law and order meeting,” he said.

IGP Jamali said he, with the support of DG Rangers and intelligence agencies, had prepared the security plan for holy month of Muharram. “The police through its own network have identified 216 matmi and tazia processions as most sensitive where heavy police force have been deployed. “Under the plan, there would a three layer security around the processions. These security layers should be well-equipped with intelligent and alert force of police and Ranger. Apart from, it there would also be a heavy force of intelligence organisations of police and secret agencies in plainclothes,” he said, adding “Inshallah 10 Muharram processions would pass peacefully.”

The chief minister expressed satisfaction on the close coordination between various secret and law enforcement agencies for the peace and security. “You are our eyes, ears and arms. I have always supported you and strengthened you,” he said proudly. “You have also reciprocated by using your maximum capacity for restoring peace in the city. Today everyone living here reaps the fruit of your efforts and sacrifices,” he said.

The IGP said that 27,942 policemen had been deployed in the city, 6,294 in Hyderabad division, 2,276 in Mirpurkhas, 7,623 in Shaheed Benazirabad division, 9,488 in Sukkur and 10,791 in Larkana Division.

“Our command and control centre, our different modes of surveillance, including mobile camera vans would be of great help to keep an eagle eye on the movement of each and every individual roaming around the processions.

Additional IG CTD Dr Sanaullah Abbasi also briefed the chief minister about the raids his department had conducted during the last few days and taking of some important terrorists into custody. “Investigation is in progress and once it is finalised it would be shared with you (the chief minister),” he said.

Home Secretary Mohammad Waseem said he had requested the federal government to suspend mobile service for three days – 8, 9 and 10 Muharram – but they had approved the suspension of the service only for 10 Muharram.

The chief minister, on the advice of the intelligence agencies, directed Chief Secretary Siddique Memon to talk to the federal government and get the mobile service off on 9th Muharram (today).