KARACHI, Sept 22: As financial losses of the Friday violence were yet to be estimated, police data released on Saturday provided details of damage done to more than half a dozen bank branches, five private buildings apart from five cinemas, a number of vehicles and most importantly a dozen lives.
“The death toll that we have confirmed after our investigation and hospital record stands at 12, including the lives of two policemen,” said SSP (south) Asif Ejaz Sheikh while speaking at a press conference.
“The number [of lives lost] being reported in the media has not been corroborated by any record available at hospitals, police stations and the parties concerned.”
The officer added that miscreants set fire to seven bank branches and at least six private buildings.
He said the fire tenders failed to douse fire in time amid a high security risk, while one fire tender rushing to a fire site was damaged on its way before being set ablaze.
“The fire engine was moving to douse cinemas fire when it was torched. So it was almost impossible [to take part in firefighting operation] in that situation, as police were also engaged with the armed mobs on different spots,” the SSP added.
The figures collated by the police showed that seven restaurants, some of which were part of international food chains, and three police posts in the south district were also set on fire.
“Apart from setting private buildings, banks and cinemas on fire, armed mobs also ransacked and looted six shops. Besides, an arms store and five wine shops were also damaged and plundered of their valuables,” he said.
About vehicles, he said, five police vans, an armoured personnel carrier, one police motorbike, three private vehicles and two private motorbikes were destroyed in arson attacks.
The officer said: “A total of 134 people, including six policemen, were wounded, while police picked up 104 suspected rioters; 70 in the south zone, 24 in the west and 10 in the east zone of the police organisational structure,” he added.