Of late, the killings in Karachi have taken on the character of personal vendetta between rival gangs and political groups as witnessed on Sunday when 13 people were shot dead in different parts of the city. The killers had a free-for-all given how they kept shooting for hours, bullying the people on more than 50 bikes without any police mobile appearing on the scene to take them on.
Though no one has a clue about the limitations of police, it is apparent that in most cases they act like silent spectators while such thugs are taking the law into their own hands. Some of the casualties resulted from head-to-head clashes between rival gangs, while others died in sniper and target shootings. One of the deceased was a member of a political party which indicates that the killings are also ethnically motivated. Sadly, the provincial setup lacks the will to restore normalcy or perhaps the menace is too strong for it to control. But in either case, it is the ordinary Pakistanis who are being slaughtered. Part of the problems is that the law enforcement agencies come into action by fits and starts, which rather than weakening the criminals emboldens them. The need is to curb the bloodletting in the city plagued by decades of lawlessness and ethnic violence with an iron hand. The hurdle is the leadership’s preference for making it through its term of office. The making and breaking of alliance spanning the past four years bear a proof of that.