KARACHI - A five-member bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, on Wednesday resumed hearing of the Karachi law and order case and reviewed the performance of police and Rangers.
Expressing dissatisfaction over the law and order situation and the performance of the law enforcement agencies (LEAs), the Chief Justice directed the Inspector General of Police (IGP) to submit a report about the law, order situation over the last one month on August 29 (today).
“Instead of improving, the situation has worsened,” the Chief Justice observed.
The bench also called for a comprehensive report starting from April 28, 2011 about the law and order in Karachi, with reasons why the police and Rangers failed to improve it even after clear directives given by the apex court in the case two years ago.
The Chief Justice remarked: “The SC decision should be implemented and peace be restored in the city.”
“When the police stations are sold and SHOs appointed after paying money what work will they do.”
The Director General Rangers apprised the bench that his force only have search-and-arrest powers. He said that many people who were arrested by the Rangers were later acquitted by the courts.
The DG informed the bench that armed wings of some political parties are active in the city.
The Chief Justice inquired the DG which power was stopping the police and Rangers from performing their duties.
To a query by the bench, Prosecutor General Sindh Shahadat Awan replied that significant improvement has been witnessed in the disposal of cases after increase in numbers of Anti-Terrorism Courts (ATCs).
The bench adjourned the hearing till August 29.
Monitoring adds: During the hearing, Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry demanded to know how the citizens could be protected when the forces could not protect themselves.
Karachi is home to multiple conflicts that frequently turn violent, including turf wars between armed gangs and ethnic and political rivalries. Militants are also said to use the city as a source of funds obtained through bank heists, extortion and kidnapping for ransom.
The most recent spate of violence in the provincial capital appears to stem from fighting between rival armed groups in Karachi’s old city areas including Lyari, where hundreds of members of the Kutchhi community have been forced to flee the chaos.