Public’s psyche and ‘dismal’ police blamed for violence in Karachi
KARACHI: It appears that the endless rounds of targeted killings, missing children and rioting during rallies in the city had flummoxed members of the National Assembly’s committee on human rights, who proposed the formation of an anti-riot police force in Karachi on Thursday.
MNA Riaz Fatiyana, who is the committee’s chairman, MNA Dr Atia Inayatullah and MNA Sabeen Rizvi proposed during a press conference that routes for public rallies need to be drawn so that preventive measures could be taken.
The committee had earlier attended a meeting at the Sindh Assembly, where they were briefed on the prevailing law and order situation in the city by Additional Inspector General Falak Khursheed, Citizens Police Liaison Committee chief Ahmed Chinoy and home department’s additional chief secretary Wasim Ahmed. MNA Khushbakh Shujaat, MNA Arish Kumar, MNA Kishwar Zehra, was also present in the meeting.
“People are being killed on ethnic, sectarian and political basis,” said MNA Fatiyana. It is clear that “the administration cannot resolve the issue by itself” and that “political dialogue” over the issue should be initiated, added the legislator.
The committee also appeared to have discussed at length various psychological and demographical issues that might be at play when thousands of the city’s residents throng to various rallies. “We should know why people take the law into their hands. It’s a democratic right [of the people] to organise and attend rallies, but the law does not allow anyone to come out with a stick,” he urged.
The legislator however, was not done. “Our society lacks ethics and norms, and we need to address it. [We should put] pressure [on] political parties to hand over or separate criminals from their wings,” said Fatyani. He added that over 40% of the country’s population consisted of youngsters, who “lack recreational means and [end up] joining criminal groups”.
Deweaponisation of the city was another idea that was proposed during the meeting. The lawmakers were particularly upset that over 1,700 people had been killed in violent incidents in the city so far this year. Home department’s Waseem Ahmed added that the city’s current police force consisted of 34,000 policemen, which was “dismally low”. MNA Fatiyana concurred in her press conference, and added that the city’s police force needed to be doubled so that it could tackle the situation. He added that the police force needed to take its image among citizens seriously, and that “criminals should be afraid of the police and not the common man”.