MIRPURKHAS: Two SHOs of Hyderabad, three constables and four bandits were killed in an encounter that continued throughout the night and came to an end early on Saturday morning in Ali Talpur town within the jurisdiction of Mehmoodabad police station.

The bodies of the policemen, identified as Sub-Inspectors Wahid Bux Leghari, Syed Hassan Ali Abdi (SHOs of Market and A-Section police stations, respectively), and constables Dilbar, Anwar and Abdul Jabbar were brought to Hyderabad after the encounter that started at around midnight and ended at 8am.

Besides, eight policemen suffered injuries. Of them four were shifted to PNS Shifa, Karachi, with for their critical condition.

SSP Irfan Baloch told Dawn that police did not know the bandits had that large amount of ammunition with them in a residential area. “Before the raid we worked on the information about the Narejos, who are involved in different cases of kidnapping for ransom, and then did a recce of the area before leaving Hyderabad.

“First, we raided a house adjacent to the bandits’ hideout which might have alerted them. When our team finally entered their house they faced stiff resistance,” said Mr Baloch.

SIP Wahid Bux who led the first team and constable Abdul Jabbar Shaikh were killed at the outset. Police immediately called in reinforcements from Matiari, Tando Allahyar, Hyderabad and Mirpurkhas districts. As the encounter dragged on, Syed Hassan Ali Abdi, who had just arrived from Hyderabad, died fighting.

DIG Sanaullah Abbasi said that Qurban Narejo and Shafiq alias Chhota Narejo, who carried head money, Wahab Narejo and Jan Mohammad were killed. They were related to each other and had recently shifted there from Khairpur, he said.

He said that Chhota was involved in the kidnapping last year of Zulfiqar Durrani, son of the High Court Bar Association president Nisar Durrani.

The DIG said the bandits used their women and children as a human shield. Police won the fight but after paying a ‘heavy price’ as they avoided targeting women and children, he said.

SSP Baloch said the bandits had probably over 1,200 live rounds with them which they used to keep police at bay throughout the night. “Zulfikar Narejo, brother of bandit Qurban Narejo, was working in the area as a rickshaw driver in disguise,” he said.

Sources in Mirpurkhas police said that Hyderabad police acted without intimating them. Mehmoodabad police detained five women and three children related to the slain bandits and recovered a sizeable stock of illegal arms including Kalashnikovs from their hideout, said the sources.

Published in Dawn, January 11th, 2015

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