Karachi: Many witnessed the cry of the girl whose father was killed when the bus, he was traveling in, was fired upon. This girl was asking just one question “what was my father’s fault?” This is the same question every citizen of the ‘city of lights’ is desperately seeking answer of.
The innocent citizens of this city definitely do not deserve such treatment: all markets closed and business centre shut down, children crying for milk and food, dwellers of sensitive areas stranded in their own homes, and even unable to reach hospitals in case of emergencies. We all have been watching, on the TV channels, the views of those confronted with such situations and facing such agony; many of them could literally be seen crying and seeking mercy from the ruthless killers and complaining about the ineffectiveness of the Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs).
Their pain is simply inconceivable and unexplainable, especially for those who have lost their loved ones in the terrifying incidents of targeted killings. Even children and women are not spared by the trained killers equipped with state of the art weapons, hand grenades and training, looking for their victims. Sons and daughters are losing their parents, wives losing their husbands and sisters losing their brothers. There is no end in sight to this evil game that resumes after every short interval.
But the question that stands unresolved is: where are the security personnel, LEAs and entire government machinery in this life-threatening scenario is taking place? Where are the guardians of nation and protectors of citizens of the state when all of this mess is taking place? Where is the advanced weaponry acquired with the taxpayers’ money? Indeed this question remained unaddressed.
It has been seen at various placed that the LEAs personnel, despite being present at critical guarding points, remain unresponsive to such brutal incidents. They remain silent spectators to the entire tragedy where the people are killing each other, hurling hand grenades at houses and claiming innocent lives. Their guns remain idle when the culprits involved in such heinous crimes, make lives miserable and cast shadow on the economic survival of the entire population of the city. They stand like statues even when arsonists set precious property on fire or when terrorists enter the houses of their victims and open indiscriminate fire at the residents. Why, is the question, are their hands tied and they are unable to establish lasting peace in this populous city. Peace, something that has become the most rare and scarce in this city.
Are these criminals politically motivated? Do they have backup from those in power? The simple answer to LEAs’ ineffectiveness is that they do not have orders to take action against the mischievous elements. Someone from the government machinery restrains from seizing the chaos. This probably is done for political gains, or for letting the body count between political parties increase. The inactivity of the security personnel could be gauged from the fact that in Korangi alone, they entered the area on the fourth day of the unrest and during this time, about 100 people were killed there. Finally, on the fifth day, people could come out and break the curfew-like situation in their area.
Therefore, it is of no astonishment that the citizens in this city now question the existence, role and purpose of the LEAs and the budget spent on them. These are the same security forces that kill mercilessly an unarmed young boy in Karachi while he was begging and pleading for his life. But it seems that the LEAs are used for political purposes and exerting pressure on their opponents. The same security forces gun down unarmed Chechen nationals, including a pregnant lady, despite the fact that they were appealing the Frontier Constabulary (FC) men to halt fire. The security personnel also kidnap people, keep them in illegal detention and even sometimes, kill them because of severe mental and physical torture.
A very sad aspect to these incidents is the sectarian and ethnic one. People belonging to different races and speaking various languages target each other for their difference. The Pashtoons and Urdu Speaking, mainly, are seen tangled with each other, abiding by the instructions of their respective political leaders. They have divided certain areas and one of them ‘punishes’ the other for entering in their ‘jurisdiction’. Unfortunately the Pashtoons and Urdu Speaking people who are not part of these parties also have to reap the bitter fruits of the fire of hate. This situation direly calls for forging unity and Islamic brotherhood within our ranks.
Followed by the incidents is a series of events; these range from hurling verbal abuses and attacks on each other to unending blame-game. The leaders, mentors and role models of political parties stage press conferences, level allegations and threaten each other of dire consequences. Then begins the ‘reconciliatory’ phase during which a ‘magic man’ from the federal government arrives at Nine Zero to ‘extinguish’ the fire, but reinforces the killing. The incidents halt, only to resume after a short interval. This is because the responsible, instead of being brought to justice, are tapped on the back by blaming the killing on the ‘third forced’ involved in these killings. It is a pity that all of this is done to support the federal government and to prolong rule in the so called national interest.
Now, some suggestions towards the solution of this problem: The first thing the federal government should do is to begin an indiscriminate unarming campaign in the city of Karachi, or at-least make sure that those who possess weapons have their licenses as well. The government should also insist upon the political parties to imperatively remove criminal elements from their ranks. Security agencies should be equipped with all necessary training to tackle such incidents in the future. Moreover, an all parties’ conference should be convened to resolve the issue. And last but not the least, able and loyal people should be appointed at the helm of affairs to resolve this issue once and for all.