Stories about CCTV cameras

What will it take for Karachi’s 20 million citizens to feel safe?

On the topic of Karachi’s security, Allah Dino Khawaja, the Inspector General (IG) of the Sindh Police, recently stressed on the need to design a comprehensive strategy to curb street crimes. It is a matter of general observation that all previous drives and campaigns in this context have failed miserably; the very obvious proof of this being the high rates of crime prevalent in Karachi despite the presence of additional forces, including the Rangers. The following are factors acting as an obstruction in providing relief to the people of Karachi: 1. Lack of training, equipment and facilities Effective law enforcement requires planning, training and implementation. Unlike the ...

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Who should be blamed for Punjab police’s inefficiency?

The big story in the news recently has been the kidnapping of children in Punjab. This year, as many as 767 children have been abducted from various cities of Punjab, including the provincial capital of Lahore. This means that 767 families have gone through hell this year.  Last year, the number stood at 1200 kidnappings. Bear in mind these are just the reported numbers. All this points to organised crime rampant in Pakistan’s largest and supposedly most secure province. What, one must wonder, is the Punjab government doing and where are its law enforcement agencies, especially the police? A word about ...

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If you cannot protect the Sindh Assembly, Mr Qaim Ali Shah, how will you protect us?

Mr Qaim Ali Shah, we have always known that your government (or non-government) is terribly incompetent. This was recently proven when the host of a private TV channel managed to bring an armed person into the assembly without being searched. Of course you and your speaker made the right noises about the sting operation being illegal and your government arrested the TV channel’s host (Iqrar ul Hassan) and his associate. The fact is, you live in a state of denial and have brainwashed yourself into believing that Sindh is a model province that is being governed very efficiently. We, however, ...

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My neighbour was mugged today, but we are too scared to go to the police

Imagine your child asks for permission to go out to play in the street in the morning. You kiss him on the forehead and leave for work, content thinking he’ll be safe right outside the house, surrounded by neighbours, away from any real threat.   You’re driving to work when your phone rings and you’re being told your child was held at gunpoint, and that too right outside the gate of your house. The natural reaction to such an incident would be fear, dread and helplessness. Today I saw something similar on Facebook and the video has left me terrified. It ...

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Six questions to ask after the #SafooraBusAttack

A couple of days ago, Karachi witnessed an unprecedented act of barbarism when a bus full of Ismailis – one of the most peaceful community in Pakistan – was targeted and shot at, resulting in the deaths of 45 people, with numerous injured. My heart goes out to the victims and their families in their difficult time. As soon as the attack took place, commiserations, condolences and compensations began to pour in from all over the country. However, I feel that it is useless now to even listen to what our leaders have to say, since they repeat the same message ...

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Breaking the Curfew since 1989

“Respect for law is dying. The whole system of justice is breaking down… nobody wants a good police force as then, they would become subject to the law”. This is Karachi in the 1980s, as described by a senior police official in the book, Breaking the Curfew, published in 1989. It was written by Emma Duncan, a journalist for The Economist, during her escapade to Pakistan in the late ‘80s. The Karachi sketched in the book, when compared to the Karachi of today, sounds more like Zurich, as our elders recall. The saddest part is that the symptoms were there for all to see even then, ...

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Security measures that every parent wants to see installed in Pakistani schools

The massacre at Army Public School (APS) in Peshawar changed our way of life, our approach towards educational institutes and our concern for the safety of our kids. The events of December 16, 2014 left some really ugly scars on the minds of our youth which will probably take decades to heal. Such incidents provide a new dimension in terms of planning for personal safety and providing a safe future for the newer generation. By giving the duty of ‘chaperone’ to a sizable number of law enforcement officers to placate the rich, elite and VIPs of our country, our government has ...

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Has our parliament been reduced to liquor, hashish and immorality?

We all remember the incident when the former defence minister outrageously slept through while the former Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani was addressing the parliament. It was hard for everyone who saw this spectacle to understand what substance or issue could possibly have made him doze off like that, during such an important address. However, to everyone’s surprise, the parliamentary session on February 27, 2014 had the answer to this. A member of the National Assembly (MNA), Jamshed Ahmad Khan Dasti, representing Muzaffargarh, Punjab, deciphered the mystery behind this. He discovered the substance that caused this to happen. Dasti addressed his fellow parliamentarians a few days back ...

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