KARACHI: The Supreme Court on Friday ordered Karachi police to immediately arrest over 33,000 criminals absconding in the city and start a campaign for the recovery of illegal arms.
Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry questioned how could peace prevail in the city when 33,000 absconders and 1,500 terrorists roam freely on its streets. He gave these remarks while presiding over a larger bench of the Supreme Court hearing the Karachi violence case in the Karachi Registry on Friday. At the inception of the hearing, Sindh prosecutor general presented his report which stated that 33,000 criminals are absconding in Karachi.
Whereas, there are about 110,549 absconders across Sindh, and 17,961 cases have become A-class. The court was told that all the terrorists were set free under the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO). While noting that police has become ineffective fully, Justice Iftikhar said had it been depoliticised present situation would not have arisen. The Sindh prosecutor general told the court that 12,734 absconders are accused in the NRO.
The DG Rangers filed a sealed report on target killers and extortionists in the court and requested the court not to publish it because it contains the names of target killers, extortionists and land mafia members who have political affiliations. Referring to the ongoing targeted operation in Karachi, the chief justice remarked that such operations should be continued on a permanent basis.
Meanwhile, Justice Jawwad S Khawaja remarked that releasing those people who are involved in heinous crimes means giving them a licence to commit crimes. The court said that the crime rate in Karachi stands at 66 percent while in other cities it is 34 percent. The chief justice ordered arrest of the 33,000 absconders, confiscation of their property and recovery of illegal weapons from them. He said help from agencies may also be sought in this regard and asked the police to boost its efficiency in arresting the culprits. He aksed police contingents from inside Sindh to facilitate them.
“The cases be run on day-to-day basis and court be informed about the cases which have been reopened. Report in respect of Arshad Pappu murder case and about the challans with regard to the accused persons who have been apprehended from September 5, 2013 until now be presented in the court,” the chief justice ordered. The court also sought details of the cases which were reopened with respect to police officers who were killed in connection with Karachi operation.