Karachi police on Saturday claimed to have killed four suspected militants who were involved in several high-profile terror cases and had ties with terrorist outfits Lashkar-i-Jhangvi (LJ) and the militant Islamic State (IS) during an 'encounter'.

Acting on a tip-off by intelligence agencies regarding the presence of some militant hideouts in Usman Khaskheli Goth on the outskirts of the metropolis, contingents of Malir police conducted a targeted raid.

Having sniffed the raid, the suspects resorted to firing and hurled a hand grenade, but could not hurt the police, whose retaliatory firing killed four suspects — according to Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Malir Rao Anwar.

The officer said the slain militants were affiliated with the banned LJ and IS.

Identifying one of the deceased as Molvi Ishaq, SSP Anwar said: “He was an important commander of LJ.”

Among the dead quartet was also a certain Nazar Ghuman, a former commander of the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) group led by slain Hakeemullah Mehsud.

“They were involved in the deadly attack on Karachi airport, PNS Mehran base and Imambargah Ali Raza at M.A. Jinnah Road," the SSP revealed. "They were also involved in several killings of police, Rangers and army personnel."

The police claimed to have recovered three TT pistols, one rifle and one motorbike from the militants' custody.

“Further investigation is underway,” said SSP Anwar.

The ‘encounter specialist’

Rao Anwar, called the ‘encounter specialist’ by some, is known for carrying out 'encounters' of controversial nature against outlaws and has claimed in the past to have killed militants belonging to various terrorist organisations and the then-Mohajir Qaumi Movement activists during his raids.

Know more: Footprints: Justice, of sorts

The majority of such cases remained unquestioned, apart from the few where the families of those shot dead moved the court.