Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Karachi Violence: Khoon kay Aansoo [Tears of Blood]

Assalamualaikum

The past few days have been something straight out of a horror-action flick, only that this is totally real, and real people are dying (and are dead), and real families are suffering. It doesn't even feel new any longer. I wonder how hard our hearts can get.

How it all started?

1. Raza Haider, MQM's MPA was shot dead on Aug 2, 2010 and his seat became empty.
2. Elections for that seat were held in Orangi Town on 17th Oct, 2010 - Sunday.
3. Starting from Saturday, news came in that different firing incidents have left many people dead, injured.
4. People concluded that it has to be ANP which had boycotted the elections and were now on a killing spree to target muhajirs.

Change of Perception
1. MQM for the first day (Sat/Sun) complained about ANP. But their stance changed.
2. Even after the results were announced, and the MQM guy won without a doubt, the incidents continued.
3. Firing/deaths continued on Monday with no let up.
3. On Tuesday (yesterday), we heard the shocking news of gunmen, entering Sher Shah Kabari Market, and shot dead 12 people, critically injuring several others. [amazing law and order situation eh? Considering the carnage had been going on since Saturday!]
4. The firing/random killing didn't stop. We heard huge rounds of gunshots very near our place, and in complete horror called up our Dad whose clinic happens to be in a VERY volatile place of Karachi. Asked him to come back ASAP, and he promised to do so, but there were still patients at his clinic!
5. Now nobody knows who the killers are... except the Lyari gang warriors are blamed and now the contention has shifted from MQM vs ANP to MQM vs PPP..

Situation now?
Around 81 people are dead from Saturday to Wednesday (in 4 days). The average person is scared to move out of his house... afraid that the next stray bullet that flies will hit him/her. There is no law, no order, no accountability, and even though we see throngs of police and rangers, no ''target killer'' has been stopped uptil now. Arrests have been made, but so what. We all know that arrests usually lead to nothing.

Main parties in Sindh government -  PPP, MQM, ANP. What are they doing?
Nothing. 

Main parties in Sindh government -  PPP, MQM, ANP. What are they saying? 
KARACHI: People arrested in connection with targeted killings are of various ethnicities and it will take time for a clear picture to emerge, said Dr Zulfiqar Ali Mirza, Sindh Home Minister at a news briefing on Sunday. ......Mirza said no one can control the target killing incidents. “Even if contract is given to America it will also be unable to bring peace,” he said.
Source: Daily Times
[Oh really? So how come we don't see such insane acts of killing happening in... America?!?!?! FYI, there IS a law there, and it's implemented. There is accountability there, and is respected. You can't justify your own incompetance by mentioning America and get away with it!]

KARACHI: President Asif Ali Zardari has ordered authorities to take strict action against those who are involved in target killings, adding that men involved in killings and drug dealings should be arrested.....He ordered authorities to arrest men involved in land grabbing. President Zardari also said that all political forces should work together so peace in the city is maintained.
Source: SAMAA
[Empty words, Mr. President. Empty words. You can say them again, and again... and again... and as long as you keep on just SAYING stuff, nothing is going to happen. Btw, what's so upsetting about calling in the army?]

Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said no decision had been made to deploy the army to Karachi, and that civilian authorities were capable of controlling the situation.
Source: Voice of America

[Sure. Fat lot of good they've done uptil now. REALLY proven their worth and effectiveness haven't they. Same question to you too Mr PM: what's so upsetting about calling in the army?]

The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) threatened to pull out of the coalition government of President Zardari after at least 33 people were killed in weekend attacks coinciding with a by-election to replace a MQM lawmaker murdered in August. That could lead to the government losing its National Assembly majority, or its downfall if the MQM sides with the opposition.

Source: Reuters
[Empty threats. They haven't ''pulled out'' of any governments. Haan, the governments have definitely ''pulled themselves out'' ... ].

The provincial government has finally decided to conduct operations against criminal elements in different violence-hit areas of Karachi, report said. The decision emerged after a meeting chaired by Secretary Interior here Wednesday. Search operation to be conducted after imposing curfew in sensitive areas. However a final decision in this regard would be made upon Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah’s arrival in the city, sources said.
Source: The Nation

[How come this decision came so late? This is today's news. The bloodshed has been happening since Saturday! And another thing. Where is Syed Qaim Ali Shah??? It's been 4 days... and he isn't in the place where he is Chief Minister!!? Is this some kind of a joke???]

*wearily*

That's all for now.

7 comments:

majworld said...

its really sad to hear about all wats happening karachi..been listening since yesterday in particular..dun knw how it will come to end :S..they are talking about operation..wat u think operation shud be done or not??? nd do normal people fall prey to these target killings too ??? i hve heard lot abt land mafia in khi 2..is it really so that land of normal people get caught by mafia like dat???
must be hard to live in such situation :S..i asked so many questions as dun knw abt khi a lot nd never visited..so wana knw ur opinion to knw bit of actual..

Uni said...

@majworld
The situation is so volatile, even now as the dear Sindh Home Minister Zulfiqar Mirza will sit down for a talk, and then give out the final 'hukm' whether the 'surgical operation' should be carried out or not.

The operation, even IF done... will not do much good believe me. If the authorities had really wanted to prevent this, Rehman Malik wouldn't have been making empty promises since Raza Haider was shot dead - and more concrete action would have been taken in Khi.. AND the army would have been called in.

But nopes. Nothing. So the operation is bound to produce loads of arrests, but the next time around, it's going to be same killings and bloodbaths.

Normal people! Everybody as normal as me and you fall prey to these attacks. My driver was trying to go back home (Saturday kee bat hay) and in the way he saw with his two eyes, two men fall down because bullets came from nowhere.. He says 'Main naali [sewerage line] main ghuss kay lait gyaa... isi tarhan jaan bachaai.. aur police? Woh to pehlay 2-3 shots sun kee bhag khari hui' - that's a trusted live eye-witness account for you!

Land mafia is active here. And they do have their disputes and killings over that! But nobody is really sure who THESE killers are, whose only job is to spread as much terror in the city as possible.

It's a hopeless situation out there. Only a revolution of some sort, can change it. Seriously.

Thanks for dropping by!

PS: Good you never visited this city... especially right now, I wouldn't recommend it to anybody!

majworld said...

sad situation..tough for normal people to live normal life..nd sad that its in the biggest city of the country..these killings seem juz like some under world movie going on..anyways hope something happens quick so that people can get a relief..lets c wat happens in next few days..
nd ya, i hve that wish to visit the city some time in life but it always is sumthing bad going on there..sad it is..

Moon said...

The fact that all this bloodshed paralyzes the entire economy and not only worsens the current business activity but also deters investors from investing, causing serious long-term damage to the already crippled economic situation, only adds more 'khoon kay aansoo'. The irony is that all the political parties themselves realize that it is in nobody's benefit to kill people for people, but the ground reality is totally out of their control. The police, which has a history of promotions/transfers taking place based on political alliances in various regimes, can not be expected to go after the very people protected by ones who promoted them. The people who are protected by the police and the political parties are all equipped with every sort of weapons you can think of. Calling in the army only adds to more contention among these groups by more killings and arrests .. which will lead to even more killings when army is gone. That is why we hear different political parties talking about "mafahimat" (reconciliation) to bring an end to this thing. But, given that these killings are based more on "land mafia" and "drug mafia" and "bhatta mafia" issues (and not on how well the parties are shaking hands on the upper levels), any reconciliation of such sort is not gonna solve this problem forever.

So, rightly said, only a revolution can change the situation. Something that radically changes the entire rules of the game, and the way politics is done in this part of the land!

Roshni said...

Disheartening to say the least =[

Uni said...

@majworld
Yes, that's the worst bit.. it's the biggest (and supposedly most developed both in terms of infrastructure, and human resource) city of the country. But ordinary citizens are subjected to this total violence, unable to do anything to help themselves.

Authorities are just by name only, no action when needed. Empty promises guaranteed!

Thanks for dropping by!

Uni said...

@Moon
That's very true. That's what shows the real intention of the killers/those who support them... to cripple the country so much that it takes a long time to stabilize it.

Calling in the army may very well lead to more contention but I sort of hoped that the army is definitely more capable of handling at least those killers roaming about on their bikes freely through the city... at least those can be apprehended, shot at... something!

I wonder how things happened in say, French Revolution - the Iran Islamic revolution etc. There has got to be some initial point where this sort of thing begins.

But I think there has got to be a band of individuals, who have the gumption to do such stuff... and that's what we majorly majorly lack! Leadership (effective one).

Thanks for dropping by!.

@Roshni
It's hopeless - we can only pray, and somehow wish that the evil designs of those on a rampage turn on themselves only...somehow!

Thanks for dropping by!