Rangers in Karachi War against Terror National Politics Other News
Rangers in Karachi
War against Terror
Presence of para-military force in Sindh, to maintain law and order, has been a bone of contention between provincial government and federal government. Sindh government has been reluctant to extend Rangers stay in Karachi while federal government wants Rangers to exercise their power in the whole province. This week a summary approved by Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, which granted extension to Sindh Rangers’ stay in Karachi with curtailed powers was submitted to the federal government. However legal experts of the Interior Ministry reviewed the summary and rejected it, saying it does not meet the legal standards.
But later, after much deliberation and exchange of conflicting remarks between the federal and the Sindh governments, the Interior Ministry finally approved a 90-day extension in the special policing powers of Sindh Rangers in Karachi.
The Interior Ministry issued two separate notifications regarding the Rangers’ powers, approving the summary sent by the Sindh government on August 1. The first notification was regarding the deployment of Rangers in Sindh for a year, while the second one was about extension in special powers of the paramilitary force for 90 days.
The Sindh government had insisted on limiting the powers of Rangers to Karachi only, whereas the Federal government was of the view that the authorities of Rangers must be extended to the entire province. MQM and PTI lawmakers also called for extending the special powers of the paramilitary force to the whole province in National Assembly session.
Although operation against terrorists is continued across the country but this week saw a surge in violent activities once again. In Quetta, three people were killed in terrorism related incidents this week. A senior lawyer at the Balochistan High Court was gunned down by unknown men when he was on way to home in his personal vehicle. While on Monday, gunmen riding a motorcycle killed two members of the Shia community in an apparent sectarian attack. According to police gunmen on a motorcycle stopped the rickshaw and opened fire on them and fled the scene. Balochistan, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, is afflicted by militancy and sectarian violence.
Meanwhile security forces carry out an operation in Sheikhupura District of Punjab in which seven extremists were killed when the police raided the group suspected of launching attacks on security posts. According to police the militants belonged to the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the banned sectarian group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ). Police also confiscated maps of important installations in Lahore and Sheikhupura at the crime scene.
The government launched a countrywide campaign against militancy called the National Action Plan in 2015 after a deadly Taliban attack on a Peshawar school killed more than 150 people, mostly children.
Meanwhile Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif expressed his resolve to make Pakistan secure for every ethnicity and religion, and said that the federal government would facilitate provincial governments on counterterrorism by effective coordination and intelligence sharing. Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif also vowed to eliminate terrorism from Pakistani soil. While addressing a gathering in Chitral, he said that space for terrorists and their abettors was shrinking and that operation Zarb-e-Azb broke the back of terrorists and they were now fleeing their sanctuaries.
After resuming office Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, following heart surgery in London, is now facing new challenges. Appointment of a new army chief or extension in the service of the current army chief and the protest movement of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) were the two most important items on the agenda of the meetings prime minister had held this week. According to media, the prime minister held one-to-one meeting with Army Chief Raheel Sharif last week and took him into confidence. According to media reports, results could be seen in the coming days.
Prime minister is also consulting his close aides over the possible protest movement of the PTI and the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) against the federal government. PTI and PAT have decided to launch anti-government campaigns to press the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) on Panama leaks investigation and justice for victims of the Model Town shooting, respectively.
PTI’s party chief had announced to hold a rally from Peshawar to Rawalpindi on August 7. The PTI was also considering filing a petition against the prime minister. Meanwhile, PAT chief Dr Tahirul Qadri has also announced to hold phase-wise countrywide ‘Qisas Movement’ from August 6 to seek justice for the victims of the Model Town incident.
According to media reports a successful national consultative conference (NCC) of all mainstream opposition parties inside and outside the parliament called by the PAT have assured Qadri of support over the cause.
All other news are considered under this category.