PPP, MQM decide to take stern action over target killings
* Rehman Malik says president wants peace in Karachi at all cost
* Fact-finding committee formed under Sindh IGP to gather information about target killings
KARACHI: The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) on Monday decided to work together and take stern action against target killings in Karachi in order to restore peace to the country’s financial hub.
The decision was made in a meeting between a delegation of the MQM and President Asif Ali Zardari at the Bilawal House.
Talking to reporters after the meeting, Interior Minister Rehman Malik said President Asif Ali Zardari “wants peace in Karachi at all costs”, as it was the economic hub of the country.
Malik said the two sides unanimously decided that all measures must be taken to maintain peace in Karachi.
“President Zardari and I talked to MQM chief Altaf Hussain regarding target killings in Karachi and we have decided to take severe action against the culprits,” Malik said.
“We want peace in Karachi and whosoever is involved in target killings will be arrested and taken to task. There is zero tolerance for criminals and anti-social elements,” the interior minister said.
He said that the government was tightening the noose around the culprits and warned them to refrain from killing innocent people. He said this “is not a mere threat”.
Malik said the government had finalised a strategy to deal with criminals and terrorists and warned banned groups to refrain from organising rallies.
“Their activities will be banned, even if they are operating under new names,” he said.
Commenting on his meeting with the Sindh chief minister earlier in the day, the interior minister said a fact-finding committee had been constituted under the provincial inspector general of police to gather information on target killings.
He said the committee would consist of members of various religious parties and suggest measures to bring the situation under control.
During the meeting, the chief minister urged law enforcement agencies to strictly monitor the activities of criminal elements, Malik said.
The meeting ordered SHOs to compile lists of religious leaders in respective jurisdictions to maintain religious harmony.
He said the meeting was also attended Sindh Home Minister Dr Zulfiqar Mirza and senior security officials.
Talking to reporters, MQM leader and Federal Minister for Overseas Pakistanis Dr Farooq Sattar said both parties would work together to identify anti-Pakistan elements who have resorted to sectarian and ethnic killings in Karachi.
He said anti-social elements had disturbed the law and order in Karachi last month by resorting to ethnic killings and this time they had resorted to sectarian killings to disturb the city’s peace.
Sattar said the president had assured MQM of his full support.
He said the MQM delegation also discussed issues relating to federal budget, sales tax on services and NFC allocations as well as the raise in electricity tariff of the Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC).
Sindh Governor Eshratul Ibad Khan, Babar Khan Ghouri, Dr Ahmed Saghir, Adil Siddiqui, Waseem Aftab and Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah also attended the meeting.
Source: Daily Times