KARACHI: The police on Saturday evening claimed to have killed in Shah Latif Town off National Highway four alleged militants linked with banned outfits who were allegedly involved in several high-profile terrorist acts.

Acting on a tip-off and information of intelligence authorities / agencies regarding the presence of militants at their alleged hideout in Usman Khaskheli Goth on the outskirts of the city, contingents of police conducted a targeted raid there, the police added.

On seeing the law enforcers, the suspects resorted to firing and threw an hand grenade, but the police party remained safe. The police returned fire and gunned down four suspects, said Malir SSP Rao Anwar Ahmad.

‘One of them was involved in targeted killing of a CTD official in Bahawalpur and four policemen in Uch Sharif in Punjab’

The officer added that the dead were affiliated with banned Lashkar-i-Jhangvi and the militant Islamic State group.

He identified one of the dead as Maulvi Ishaq.

“He was an important commander of LeJ,” said the Malir police officer.

Rao Anwar told Dawn that Maulvi Ishaq was involved in targeted killing of a CTD Punjab official in Bahawalpur district besides killing of four policemen in Uch Sharif in Punjab.

Another dead was identified as Nazar, who had remained a guard of the slain Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan commander Hakeemullah Mehsud. He was involved in attacks on soldiers and kidnapping for ransom in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

“They were also facilitators of deadly attacks on Karachi airport, PNS Mehran Base and Imambargah Ali Raza on M.A. Jinnah Road in the past,” said Mr Anwar.

They were also involved in several killings of policemen, Rangers and army personnel.

The police claimed to have recovered three TT pistols, one rifle and one motorbike from their possession.

Replying to a question, the SSP claimed that the LeJ and TTP members had now joined the IS.

The militants had become ‘active’ in Karachi again as a police constable was gunned down in Gulberg on Friday morning, he added.

Rao Anwar said the killed militants were planning to carry out terrorist acts in the metropolis.

“Further investigation is under way,” he added.

Published in Dawn, January 14th, 2018

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