Senators lash out at govt over Karachi violence

ISLAMABAD: The Upper House, on Thursday, witnessed heated debate over recent disturbances in Karachi, in which more than 104 people were killed, with senators converging on the point that both the federal and provincial governments had completely failed to protect life and property of citizens and enforce their writ in the restive city.MQM demanded the government to carry out a grand but fair operation in Karachi and clear the city of all kinds of gangsters, mafias and militants.The party opined that police, Rangers and other law-enforcement agencies acted like mute spectators to the scenes of bloodshed and did not budge from their positions to stop the slaying of innocent people.

Senators, belonging to the MQM, said the government’s machinery got into act on fifth day of the recent violence and brought the situation under control.However, they did not hesitate to question as to why the government did not move to restore peace in troubled areas on the first day. Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party Senator Abdur Rahim Mandokhel claimed that during the entire period of unrest in commercial hub of the country, only Pakhtuns were targeted.They were killed, their properties were destroyed, their means of transportation were put on fire, and it seemed that a well-planned conspiracy was at work against them,” Mandokhel added.

He said the interior minister just visited Karachi, met a particular party’s leaders and returned with the promise that the situation would be brought under control. “The interior minister, in fact, totally failed to control law and order situation in Karachi,” he observed.MQM Senator Tahir Mashhadi questioned that why the provincial government remained numb and insensitive during five-day disturbances.He claimed that no political party could be involved in such unlawful activities. “Militants and gang mafias are behind these killings in Karachi. It is a clear-cut genocide of residents of Karachi,” he said, adding, “This is not a time for point scoring over situation in the city and the government should clarify why it was unable to take actionon the first day of unrest.”

“There are terrorist activities, bomb blasts in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and also in Punjab. Law-enforcement agencies take action there but not in the case of Karachi where they have failed to deliver to the public,” he lamented.He said that stagnancy on the part of law-enforcement agencies created doubts among political parties and general public. The MQM leader also admitted that Pakhtuns were founders of Karachi and they still served the whole city. “It is need of the hour that the government should take appropriate measures to restore rule of law in the troubled city,” he underscored.

Earlier, leader of opposition in the Senate, Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, said Rehman Malik claimed that Israeli made weapons were used in acts of violence in Karachi. “The points to ponder over are that who brought these weapons to the city and how these weapons reached there,” he said.PML–N’s Ishaq Dar termed Karachi incidents painful and said it was a serious issue. “If the government cannot not take it seriously, the situation will get out of control and spread across the country,” he warned. – Dailytimes