Abdul Sattar Edhi 'under Taliban threat'

Published Jun 15, 2012 10:18am

Abdul Sattar Edhi, the founder of the Edhi Foundation, is the most renowned philanthropist in Pakistan. - Photo by Dawn.com

KARACHI: Pakistan's most revered social worker has been given round-the-clock protection against an alleged Taliban threat, officials said Friday.

Abdul Sattar Edhi, 85, runs the country's largest charity, which operates hundreds of ambulances and shelters for women, children and the destitute.

Described as a “living saint” for his modest lifestyle and charitable crusade, Edhi has won international peace awards and is one of Pakistan's most popular figures.

But for the first time he now has round-the-clock police protection in Karachi, Pakistan's largest city of 18 million where he is based.

“There is a threat to him by Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), which wants to kidnap him and use him to get their detained militants released in exchange,” a Pakistani security official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Two armed policemen, who each work a 12-hour shift, have been going everywhere with Edhi since June 5, the official said.

Aslam Khan, a senior police official, said “a letter containing a hit-list has been intercepted, which includes Edhi and two police officials, including me,” he said.

Khan and Rao Anwar, the other police official on the alleged hit list, have both narrowly escaped bomb attacks in Karachi claimed by the TTP.

Khan's house was flattened by a powerful bomb on September 19, 2011, while he was sleeping. He escaped unhurt but eight people were killed.

Anwar was in an armoured personnel carrier on April 5 when it was rammed by a motorcyclist laden with explosives, killing four people.

Edhi said he was carrying on regardless. “I have accepted the guards, but that won't deter me from doing my job to serve my people,” he told AFP.

But Edhi's son and deputy, Faisal, told AFP that the Taliban had visited his father's office on June 6 to assure him that he was not a target.

“They told my father that they respect him and admire whatever he does, and won't target him ever,” Faisal told AFP.

More From This Section

Comments (33) (Closed)


Karachi Wala
Jun 15, 2012 12:22pm
If these threats are real, the only way protecting Mr. Edhi is, wherever he goes there should always be at least one very high ranking politician traveling with him. This should be done regardless of the politician’s political affiliation or each party should take a turn. The poor policemen will only die when he is abducted, or like in the case of Salman Taaseer, might well be involved.
Ravi
Jun 15, 2012 03:34pm
Edhi is just doing a Publicity Stunt..He is not that important
Salman
Jun 15, 2012 12:13pm
There ideology of hate would not spare any one.
Agha Ata
Jun 15, 2012 12:31pm
Two armed policemen? And they, too, working in shifts? One at a time, to protect Sattar Edhi? That is not even a good joke to laugh at. What would they do if a van stops in a lonely street (or even not in a lonely street) and half a dozen healthy fighters of Taliban jump out and take hold of Edhi? Would that police man be able to protect himself and manage to be alive when it is all over? Sattar Edhi would be kidnapped alright, but the poor policeman will be killed. SECURITY in Pakistan should think of some logical methods of protecting one of the greatest men of the country. This protection provided is 100% worse than security provided to Benazir Bhutto.
Seedoo
Jun 15, 2012 03:54pm
The statement by Edhi's son is baffling "But Edhi’s son and deputy, Faisal, told AFP that the Taliban had visited his father’s office on June 6 to assure him that he was not a target. “They told my father that they respect him and admire whatever he does, and won’t target him ever,” Faisal told AFP. So these Talibans runaround in the city in the open and pay a visit (of either respect or destruction) to whomever they like, without any consequences :-)
khansproductions
Jun 15, 2012 01:23pm
he needs more security. He is the hero !
Kumar
Jun 15, 2012 10:41am
May God Protect him. He is really a 'living saint'
Aliya
Jun 15, 2012 11:02am
God forbid that the day come when Pakistan should lose its biggest hero in its short history to the beasts who have been misguiding many to become cannon fodder. Abdul Sattar Edhi God bless you in every sense of the word.
Manzoor Elahi
Jun 15, 2012 07:33pm
Wishing Mr. Edhi a long life.. His contributions are too huge for anyone to truly understand, leave alone duplicate.
Appelant
Jun 15, 2012 06:57pm
A wizard too evade a house. Apeal to TTP for God sake save the old venerable living saint of world.
pardaisi
Jun 15, 2012 06:54pm
He is the only person that can bring termendous POSITIVE attention to Pakistan before it is too late. He deservs salute from humanity!
Salim India
Jun 15, 2012 04:39pm
You look at him and the peace and serenity flows from his face
Tariq
Jun 15, 2012 04:25pm
Mr Ravi - The Saint does need not publicity , Publicity comes to him 24 hours a day Like mother Teressa . The 85 Years old man spent all his life try to make human being regardless of religion, creed,colour or race better and provide shelter and food . He may be not important to you, but millions of unfortunate people around the Globe need his help and consider him a saint . Important or not important does not bother him. What bothers him the most is the selfish people like you , who does not want to help the poor , but rather critise millions of people who extends their hand to work with him.
Rana
Jun 15, 2012 12:07pm
Although I am against the Taliban but I cant expect it from them. Taliban cannot be that worse, although we disagree with their ideology. Yes it can be done by the agencies of US to create hatered against TTP.
Mohammad Ali Khan
Jun 15, 2012 12:04pm
Only a very sick mind can think of harming Mr.Edhi.
Sami Ullah
Jun 15, 2012 12:02pm
I think the Government will fail to provide security and protection to this unique social worker, the police even cannot protect themselves how they will save the said hero life.
Jeffmahagaonvi
Jun 15, 2012 12:01pm
Zero tolerance towards alQaeda, Taliban/TTP if we want to safe the country. Real living saint, Abdul Sattar Edhi should be protected at all means.
m h
Jun 15, 2012 11:46am
Well, one has to wonder, would you really want to be 'protected' by Pakistani Police? After all, they haven't done a very good job on 'protecting' the rest of the ciitizens of Pakistan.
Kouser Izhar
Jun 15, 2012 11:43am
He needs highest protection from the best security team - Judiciary, Army and Rangers should grant him protection right away
FRA
Jun 15, 2012 11:38am
Edhi should fear the ruling elite and ruling class rather than anyone else
momina
Jun 18, 2012 01:46pm
Now this is the height of barbarism----wanting to kill a person who does o much good.Quran Sharif ka mutaela kabhi ki hei inho nein?Doubt it very much.
Ali H. Ayub
Jun 15, 2012 01:11pm
yeah, they lay one hand on him and i will personally go --- the people will personally go -- and grab these TTP walas by their scraggly beards this is obviously not about Islamism. TTP are just terrorists, and soon hopefully they will receive lead bullets between their eyes when they are all caught.
JOY
Jun 15, 2012 01:08pm
GOD BLESS HIM AND GIVE HIM 100 YEARS OF LIFE. JOY,INDIA
Aizaz Moin
Jun 15, 2012 11:16am
Oh for God's sake why this poor old man? Just shows how desperate they really are and yet people still join them in droves. What has this country descended to?
siraj
Jun 16, 2012 02:33am
It seems he is the only one doing something and care for Pakistan, if anything happens to him, it will do nothing but add to the misery of Pakistan.
Mohammad
Jun 16, 2012 02:55am
Molana Edhi does NOT need publicity. He is a well known personality.
Kabir
Jun 16, 2012 03:01am
I'm not a Pakistani and I should not be commenting here but whatsoever I have read about Edhi Saab, I have utmost respect for him and his work speaks for itself. Its high time for Pakistani to stop living in denial and try to fix the terrorism problem thats stemming out from the region.
Baba Sidni
Jun 16, 2012 04:57am
I will join you, just tell me the date and place.
Sadia Mahmud
Jun 16, 2012 04:59am
Maybe Taliban can learn from Edhi Sahib's life what a true Muslim is like! God bless Edhi Sahib
Baba Sidni
Jun 16, 2012 04:59am
He is important to me.
Hni
Jul 19, 2012 10:05am
May Allah protect eidhi n long healthy life he is pride of Pakistan ".........I think their is no such social worker any where in world ........
Krishna
Jun 16, 2012 06:10pm
Mr. Edhi is a great person, Wishing him a long life, may god bless him with good health.
Ahmed
Jul 16, 2012 08:55am
Like many other great peoples killed in last two decades its a conspiracy of those killers to kill Edhi but their propaganda works and everyone thinking that Edhi will be killed by TTP but Not really. Never proven that when a call receive for acceptance of any incident by TTP. Its a simple way to put every blame on an unseen subject.