Target killing in Karachi is again on the rise, with police and Rangers watching the ever-deteriorating situation as silent spectators. It appears they can find no clues as to the forces behind these gruesome crimes. An official report containing details of the joint interrogation report prepared by key government agencies about the 26 accused, arrested and probed in 2010 in Karachi’s target killing cases, indicates that all of them belonged to political and religo-political parties. The report brings to light horrifying confessions and crime history of these alleged target killers, including those having South African connections.

Almost every page of the voluminous report is full of accounts of the cruel, ruthless ways in which the victims were killed. Prepared by the Home Department of Sindh, its copies were sent to the President, Prime Minister, Interior Ministry and other concerned departmental heads in the federal and provincial governments, but the action, if any taken on the report, does not appear to have had any effect. Instead, of late, the target killers have spread their scope of operation, by adding the sectarian element.

This trend cost the lives of three Shia lawyers of the same family on Wednesday. Three others of the same sect were murdered in Quetta, including an FIA official. The Pakistan Bar Council, Supreme Court Bar Council and other organisations called for a strike on Thursday, while the Shia community leaders have declared a three-day mourning period to condemn these brutal killings. Former Sindh Information Minister Sharjeel Memon is on record, having accused India of training terrorists who are involved in target killing in Karachi and elsewhere in Pakistan.

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According to him, the security agencies had confirmed that some recently arrested had received training in India. Last year, Interior Minister Rehman Malik told an in-camera session of Parliament that India was behind the insurgency in Balochistan and target killing in Karachi. But for unknown reasons, the ruling leadership has been unable to pursue these claims to their logical end or to send a dossier through diplomatic channels to New Delhi. These acts of terrorism should be condemned by all and sundry, while urging the authorities to rise to the occasion and act against those involved without fear.


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