Abbas Town suo moto: SC seeks report for intelligence agencies

KARACHI: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday ordered Inter Services Intelligence ISI, Military Intelligence MI, and Intelligence Bureau IB to submit report about Abbas Town incident particularly pointing out as to whether intelligence in this regard was shared with police and other law enforcement agencies.

Three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and comprising Justice Amir Hani Muslim and Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan directed Chief Secretary Sind to immediately suspend SSP, DSP and SHO of the concerned area and issue such notification during the course of the day.

The bench was hearing the Abbas Town blast suo moto case at SC Karachi Registry.

Chief Justice of Pakistan, Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry had taken suo moto notice of the blast in Abbas Town, Karachi. He had directed Advocate General and Inspector General of Police IGP Sind police to furnish comprehensive report regarding the incident.

Advocate general of Sind filed a report on behalf of the IGP. He informed the court that at least 50 people were killed and over others 139 injured when a bomb ripped through two apartments at Shia dominated Abbas Town in Karachi on Sunday evening. He told the court that over 68 flats and 31 shops were destroyed.

CJ came down hard on the police for their delayed response to the blast, saying IG and other police officials should have resigned if they had bit of shame. He remarked that if law enforcers do not secure the life and property of citizens they have no right to hold posts.

CJ said that apart from blast, another incident took place when participants of a funeral procession came under the firing which reflects the complete failure of police to control law and order. He said that had provincial government serious it should have fired IG Sind and others at that time for their failure.

He said that authorities have failed to discharge their duties. If responsible police officials are not suspended then the court will sack them, he added.

SSP district Malir Rao Anwar stated before the court that he himself travelled in an armoured personnel carrier APC as police officers are not secure. In response CJ replied that police officials feeling insecure should leave their jobs.

At that time senior advocate of SC Ghulam Qadar Jatoi stood up and said that current situation of city portrays complete failure of government, adding citizens risk their lives when they go for work. He said that government has become apathetic towards the issues of common man. To which CJ remarked that you don’t have APC to travel in the city, safely. The court also scolded the police for registering FIR of the incident after 24 hours.

Anwar Mansoor Khan, who represented the provincial government, said that terrorism is a national issue, adding in past naval and ISI headquarters have been attacked by the terrorists. To which Justice Hani said that police department’s house was not in order and it has no relation with the terrorism. CJ remarked that it shows insensitive act of the government that even a show cause notice has not been issued to the police officials.

The court also came down hard on the Rangers saying paramilitary force is equally responsible for incident and lawlessness in the city. CJ said that Rangers has been given police powers apart from investigation so Rangers is equally responsible for such incidents. The court ordered the in person appearance of director general of Rangers Sind within half an hour.

DG Rangers Major General Rizwan appeared before the court and submitted that since 1995 troops of the Rangers have been deployed in the province but since August 2011 police powers have been conferred upon the Rangers in Karachi. CJ asked DG Rangers to explain his position in respect of Abbas Town bombing. He informed the court that total eleven thousands
Ranger personnel are deployed in the city.

He said Rangers troops were deployed near the site incident and responded swiftly to situation. He said that Rangers after getting information of the blast moved to the site but enraged protestors did not allow them to enter the area. CJ said that when Rangers failed to enter the area of incident what to talk about police.

The court asked from him if any action was taken against Rangers personnel deployed in the area on their failure to assist the victims of the bombing. He said that personnel deployed their performed their duty very well for that purpose he did not take any action.

The court observed that since the rangers in the city has been deployed the law and order in the city has further deteriorated. The court said that paramilitary forces have not taken any effective action to curb the terrorism in the city.

CJ said that in presence of the considerable good number of personnel of Rangers crimes of terrorism and other offences have not been controlled.

The court directed DG Rangers to furnish reply on the next hearing and explain why Rangers failed to avert terrorism in the city, particularly when it has been given police powers.

Counsel appearing on behalf of the provincial government informed the court that after consultation the chief minister has ordered placing the services of the IG Sind and DIG East at the disposal of the federal government.

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