Sindh asks Balochistan to help stop agency kidnappings

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  1. ejazr

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    Oct 8, 2009
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    Sindh asks Balochistan to help stop kidnappings

    Home Minister Sindh Dr Zulfiqar Mirza has said the provincial government has written a letter to the Balochistan government, asking it to coordinate with the police in order to control rising incidents of kidnappings.

    “We are facing most of the kidnapping cases in the border areas of Sindh, especially Kashmore,” he said after inaugurating an awareness campaign programme at the Artillery Maidan police station on Wednesday about the Complaint Centre established in the Home Department.

    According to the home minister, in most of the cases of kidnapping for ransom, the culprits take the abductees to Balochistan and also collect ransom there.

    Responding to a question about the Satish Kumar kidnapping case, he said the government was ready to pay a ransom of five million rupees to the kidnappers.

    He said the government was not taking any risk in this regard, adding that the criminals could be arrested and the ransom recovered from them, but if they killed the innocent person the loss would be irreparable. “Kumar has been kidnapped by Taliban and we are trying to get him released safely.”

    Earlier, speaking at the launching ceremony, Mirza said it was a demand of Karachiites that there should be a complaint centre, so they could lodge complaints against the police as well as about crimes.

    He said that the aim of the awareness campaign was to educate people about the objective of the complaint centre. He said anyone could lodge their complaint against target killings, robberies, police and even the Home Department.

    Mirza said that police officers of good repute would run the complaint centre, with the aim of eliminating crime from the metropolis.

    The programme, he added, had been started with the help of reputable citizens.

    The home minister stated that billboards would be erected throughout Sindh in order to educate the citizens about the objective of the complaint centre. He briefed the media about the progress on the complaint centre, saying that so far 1,416 complaints had been received through phone, fax, email and by hand.

    He said that 975 complaints were received by hand, two through emails, 72 through fax and 367 through phone calls. He said that 451 complaints were against the police, two against target killings, 10 against robberies, 33 against extortion, seven against vehicle-snatching, 34 against domestic violence, four against the Education Department, 53 against kidnappings, four against the Home Department, three against rangers, four against the Anti-corruption Department and three complaints were received against the FIA.

    Answering a question about the law and order situation in Karachi, he said that the government was under no political pressure in this regard, adding that stern action would be taken against troublemakers.

    Replying to a question about the increasing extortion cases in the city, he said that the government had formed a special unit to take action against the extortionists. He added that the police had recently busted a gang of extortionists with more than 25 members.

    The home minister said that the government had also started a Witness Protection Programme to provide security to witnesses. In the past, many criminals were released by courts because the police had no witness against them, he said, adding that if there were any witnesses they refused to identify criminals before court due to threat or fear about their and their family members’ lives.

    Mirza pointed out that the idea to put the “Witness Protection Programme” in place was conceived after it was observed that witnesses were reluctant to come forward because of fear, especially in homicide cases, cases of terrorism and other heinous crimes. He said that now the programme would ensure protection to witnesses in major criminal cases from physical harm and intimidation.

    IGP Sultan Salahuddin Babar Khattak, said in his address that the complaint centre would help the police to perform their duties in an effective way. He said that there was a gap between the police and public and such programmes would help the police to bridge it.

    Consultant on Home Affairs Sharfuddin Memon, Capital City Police Officer Karachi (CCPO) Fayyaz Leghari, DIG South Zone Ghulam Nabi Memon, SP Saddar Town Irshad Ali Raza Sehar and others were present on the occasion.

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