The police took out few of these top ten gangsters from jails and closed their chapters in staged encounters after some influential politicians and police high-ups withdrew backing from these notorious criminals, who otherwise remained a symbol of terror for the Lahorites for years.
Some of these gang leaders were gunned down by their rivals while rest of them fled the country to save their lives after Shahbaz Sharif became the Punjab Chief Minister for second time. Mr Sharif encourages extra-judicial killings of most wanted and notorious gangsters, his political rivals and underworld sources said.
The top ten underworld bosses including Saqib Langra, Mubeen Butt, Aslam Bassa, and Naveed Lumbiwala were gunned down in fake police encounters. Inspector Naveed Saeed, and Arif Ameer alias Tipu Truckanwala were shot dead by their rivals.
However, Gogi Butt, Teefi Butt, Malik Ahsan and Abid Boxer managed to flee from the country soon after Shahbaz Sharif assumed the office.
Arif Amir alias Tipu Truckanwala: He was considered as underworld don in the City though he had no large criminal record but he had a number of enemies in the underworld.
Tipu was attacked on his arrival from Dubai near Lahore Airport in January 2010. He fell victim to bloody enmity, which had started with the murder of his father, Billa Truckanwala, in 1994. Khurrum Butt who shot at and injured Tipu told the police that he had avenged the murder of his brother.
Mobeen Butt: Notorious extortionist Mubeen Butt was gunned down in a fake police encounter in January this year, shortly after he was brought out of the Kot Lakhpat Jail in connection with the hearing of a case against him in an Anti-Terrorism Court.
Mobeen Butt (35) had been facing life imprisonment in 38 cases of murder, attempted murder, extortion and kidnap for ransom.
Aslam Bassa: City police killed notorious gangster Aslam alias Bassa and two of his accomplices during a brief 'shootout in Raiwind Police precincts in April 2007.
Bassa was involved in dozens of cases of murder, extortion, rape and kidnapping. He had about Rs one million bounty on his head.
Saqib Langra: Another character in the underworld Saqib Langra was killed in fake police encounter near Suggian Bridge in 2009. Langra was involved in several cases of murders, extortion and police encounters. He was a street gang operator and his men, on his order, gunned down three policemen outside Camp Jail, where he was kept. He was also one of the leading extortionists.
Naveed Saeed: A former Punjab police inspector, better known as the pioneer of extra-judicial killings had been gunned down by his rivals in Sattukatla police precincts along with three of his friends in November 2005.
Naveed killed around 100 people including proclaimed offenders and militants and was also suspected of killing people for money during the time when Shahbaz Sharif was the Punjab chief minister. The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) claimed that Naveed tried to kill Asif Ali Zardari when he was in the custody of Karachi police. After he was removed from service, he went to England. After returning from the UK, Naveed got into the real estate business - dealing specially in disputed properties.
Naveed alias Lumbi Wala: Police staged another fake encounter in Shahdra Town area and closed the episode of Lumbi Wala in October 2004. His accomplices were also gunned down in the 'encounter.
Naveed alias Lumbi Wala was the leading drug pusher in the Walled City and he had also killed policemen on Dil Muhammad Road as they tried to enter his area.
Abid Boxer: He joined the police department as Assistant Sub Inspector on Sports basis and was promoted to the rank of inspector as he staged a number of fake encounters and killed several people on the orders of his bosses. He also enjoyed good connections in the political circles and top police hierarchy. He fled the country as he lost police and political backing after developing enmity with a number of groups in the underworld. Currently, sources believed, he is staying in Kenya and his red warrants have been issued through Interpol.
Teefi Butt, Gogi Butt, Malik Ahsan: The underworld dons trio Teefi Butt, Gogi Butt and Malik Ahsan were the members of a land mafia, and they enjoyed best time of their life during the regime of President Pervez Musharraf. They had also good relations with former Governor Punjab Khalid Maqbool, renowned bureaucrat Kamran Lashsari and SSP Chaudhry Shafqaat. They are also nominated accused in the murder case of Tipu Truckanwala.
Unlike others gangsters, Malik Ahsan, Gogi Butt, and Teefi Butt were deeply involved in real estate business and dealing in disputed property deals. They also had developed enmity with several underworld gangs. Presently, all the three are underground while police sources believed that they are out of country as they fled away to save themselves for the time being.
The game is not over. Some new faces are emerging in the underworld and now we are after them, a top police officer commented, when contacted.