KARACHI: Karachi police chief Javed Odho on Friday said that the metropolis witnessed 537 incidents of street crimes during the month of June compared to 485 cases reported in May.

The new city police chief shared the monthly performance report with the media here in what appears to be the first of its kind initiative taken by the department.

Accompanied by three zonal DIGs and DIG-traffic, he said that total 35 people were murdered in June on account of various reasons as compared to 51 killings in May.

“Total 537 cases of street crimes/robberies were registered in June as compared to 485 cases in May,” he said, adding that the 17 per cent increase in street crimes was because of a policy under which area SHOs were bound to lodge every FIR.

City police chief says 14 ‘street criminals’ killed, 102 injured in 80 encounters last month

He said that total 30 incidents of murder or injury over resistance during robberies were reported in June compared to 45 in May. “Thus, 50pc reduction in these crimes was registered in June as compared to May.”

However, data compiled by the Citizen-Police Liaison Committee said total 7,661 incidents of street crimes were reported in May while the number of same crime till June 22 stood at 6,911.

The city police chief said that 14 ‘street criminals’ were killed while 102 injured in 80 encounters in the last month.

‘LG polls to be hotly contested’

He also made it clear that no incident of violence in the July 24 local government election in the metropolis would be tolerated and miscreants would be dealt with iron hand.

He apprehended that the forthcoming LG polls would also be ‘hotly contested’ like the by-election on a National Assembly seat, NA-240, in Korangi district.

Responding to questions, he said that violence started during the by-election on NA-240 because of the role of one ‘presiding officer’, who caused tension between two parties.

He said political leaders deserved respect but they should not take law into their hands.

Defending the police performance, he said the political leaders had received show-cause notices from the Election Commission as police were not responsible for the violence.

He said that as compared to the recent past, heinous crimes, such as targeted killings, kidnapping for ransom and extortion had “almost ended”.

In June, two incidents of kidnapping for ransom were reported. “There is no organised gang of kidnappers active in the metropolis,” claimed the city police chief. “At present, there is no organised gang of extortionists active in the city.”

He said total seven incidents of extortion took place in June.

‘Internal migration’

The city police chief said migration from other parts of the country to Karachi was also a contributory factor behind a surge in crimes as they also settle personal score/enmities here.

Besides, he said easy availability of weapons and narcotics were also one of the factors. “Narcotics and crime syndicates are hand in glove,” he opined.

He said total 785 drugs suppliers/peddlers were arrested. He added 70pc drugs suppliers on the police’s list had been arrested but many of them were enlarged on bail.

He said drugs came from other parts of the country and police were increasing inter-provincial coordination to curb the smuggling.

He said rehabilitation centres for addicts were being established in parts of the city.

Published in Dawn, July 9th, 2022

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