PM orders committee to oversee Karachi operation

KARACHI: Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday directed to form a committee comprising of political stakeholders and representatives from law enforcing authorities to oversee hindrances and complaints regarding ongoing operation against criminal elements in Karachi.

Chairing a high-level meeting at Governor House Karachi to review law and order situation, Nawaz Sharif directed to form the committee on the recommendations of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and Jamaat-e-Islami (JI).

The prime minister said Karachi holds a great importance for him and he is ready to shake hands with anyone for peace in the city. “All political forces want peace in the city and no one will be allowed to use political parties as cover for their criminal activities,” he said.

He said that Karachi operation was initiated with the consent of all political stakeholders in the city and now they should join hands with the government to bring a lasting peace.

The meeting was attended by COAS General Raheel Sharif, DG ISI Major General Zaheerul Islam, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, former President and PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari, Chief Minister Sindh Qaim Ali Shah, ANP Leader Shahi Syed, Jamaat-e-Islami Karachi Chief Hafiz Naeemur Rehman, PML-N leaders and civil bureaucracy.

According to sources, Director General Rangers, Chief Secretary Sindh, Director General Intelligence Bureau and Inspector General of Police Sindh briefed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif about the progress of the ongoing operation and law and order situation in the city.

Prime minister was briefed that land mafia, drugs mafia and elements belonging from banned outfits were creating law and order problems in the city. He was also briefed over progress on inclusion of names of notorious criminals in the red book and bringing back accused from foreign countries with the help of Interpol.

The authorities also briefed the prime minister over progress on shifting anti-terror courts to Malir Cantt, placing scanners at entry and exit points of Karachi and setting up a high security prison to accommodate high profile criminals.

The prime minister directed law enforcing authorities to beef up intelligence sharing among different agencies and ensure peace in the city. He said that the government would not leave Karachi alone in this situation and it will continue to cooperate with political forces to improve the law and order situation.

He directed Chief Minister Sindh Qaim Ali Shah to speed up operation in Karachi and said that he should carry out Karachi operation like a T20 cricket match and avoid treating it like a test match.

The prime minister applauded Rangers and police for playing a crucial role in lowering crime rate in the city and said that the current operation should continue. “High level civil and military leadership will oversee progress in the Karachi operation,” he said.

Speaking on the occasion, COAS General Raheel Sharif extended his full cooperation to the government and said that the law enforcing agencies would fully cooperate with the federal and provincial governments in curbing crime rate. “We will move forward on the recommendations of the prime minister,” he said.

Briefing the meeting, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said that 700,000 illegal SIMS have already been blocked. “Process of blocking illegal SIMs will gain momentum after the introduction of 3G technology,” he said adding that it was difficult process to block SIMs.

Karachi police chief Shahid Hayat said that the blocking illegal SIMs would be helpful in curbing 50 percent crime in the city. He said that the police was operating freely in the city without interference from any quarter.

Former Prime Minister Asif Ali Zardari assured his support to interior minister for bringing peace in the city and said that 2000 retired army personnel were inducted in the police to raise the level of police force in the city.

However, Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) Chief Hafiz Naeem ur Rehman demanded of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to remove long serving Sindh Governor, citing his leaning towards a particular party.

Later, talking to media, Hafiz Naeem ur Rehman said that the incumbent governor had broken all records of serving for the longest period and he no more remains a representative of federation due to his leaning towards a particular party.

He demanded that the prime minister should announce funds for development projects in Karachi.

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