Karachi peace impossible until mafias eliminated: CJ Iftikhar
22 March, 2013
KARACHI: Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry observed that peace could not be maintained in Karachi until the land and weapons mafia were eliminated and the delimitation of constituencies was ensured.
"Peace in Karachi cannot be restored until the writ of the state is established in every part of the city," the five-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, observed, while hearing the Karachi law and order suo moto implementation case.
The apex court directed the police and the Rangers to purge Lyari of criminal elements and establish the 'writ of the state' there and other troubled areas of the city and remove all no-go areas come what may.
The court observed that the existence of no-go areas meant that the police were accepting defeat and directed the IG Sindh to name the influentials who were creating hurdles for a police operation in Lyari.
According to NNI, the Inspector General of Sindh Police presented a detailed report over incidents of target killings and extortion in the city.According to NNI, the report submitted by IG Sindh included a list of 224 arrested target killers, having affiliation with different political parties and banned outfits. IG Sindh reported that these arrests were made after 2011.
It was mentioned in the report that 81 arrested target killers were affiliated with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), 38 with Sunni Tehreek (ST), 9 with Tehrik-e-Insaf and 13 others belonged to the Awami National Party (ANP).
The list also included names of 27 members of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), 17 from the Lyari gang war, six from the People's Amn Committee, two from the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LJ) and five from Jandullah.
The court took exception to the contradictory statements by the Rangers and the police regarding existence of no-go areas in Lyari. DG Rangers Major General Rizwan Akhtar categorically stated in his statement that there were no no-go areas in Lyari while DIG South Shahid Hayat said that due to a shortage of police, operations against criminals in Lyari were in the doldrums.
The chief justice observed that the law enforcement agencies had to evolve more than one strategy for restoration of peace in the city so that peaceful elections could be held on May 11. The court directed DG Rangers and IGP Sindh to explain as to why no-go areas had not been cleared in the city, including Lyari, and assign reasons for not taking action against so-called powerful groups.
The court directed the Rangers and IGP Sindh counsels to hold meetings in the presence of the chief secretary and submit a joint statement with regard to the existence of no-go areas in the city including Lyari and inform the court about the strategy to clear the different areas of the city from illegal weapons and crimes so that the court might pass an appropriate order in this regard.
The chief justice observed that restoration of peace could not be possible in the city until delimitation of constituencies, removal of encroachments and land grabbing etc were made in compliance with the Supreme Court orders.
The court also took notice of the absence of the chief secretary, who was on leave, and observed that the city was burning but it was left at the mercy of criminals as prima facie there was no chief secretary and IG Sindh.
The court directed the advocate general to ask the chief secretary to appear before the court on Friday cutting short his vacation.
The court also inquired of the IG about the media reports with regard to the killing of gangster Arshad Pappu, his brother and friend in the Lyari area and humiliation and disgracing of their bodies by a rival group. The court asked who was responsible for ensuring that every person whosoever he might be had to be dealt with as per the law and procedure laid down in criminal law.
The court inquired whether an FIR had been registered regarding the murder of Arshad Pappu and disgracing of their bodies and whether the culprits involved in the area had been arrested or not.
DIG South Shahid Hayat submitted that he got a clue about the culprits involved in the incident and sought time to probe the killing of Arshad Pappu and others. The court directed DIG South to submit the detailed report about the incident on Friday.
Rangers' counsel Shahid Anwar Bajwa submitted a statement on behalf of DG Rangers Major General Rizwan Akhtar stating that there was no no-go area in Lyari. Justice Jawwad S Khawaja observed that it seemed that due to political expediencies action was not being taken in certain areas of the city. DIG Shahid Hayat submitted that despite all-out efforts, the police and Rangers could not enter Lyari.