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Military operation to be launched against criminals in Sindh following cabinet nod. The caretaker government in Sindh has decided to launch a massive joint military operation led by the Pakistan Army, police and Rangers to curb incidents of kidnapping by eliminating dacoits from the province’s katcha (riverine) areas.

The decision was made in a cabinet meeting held at the Chief Minister’s House on Thursday with interim CM Justice (retd) Maqbool Baqar in the chair.

The cabinet also accorded approval for the extension of Rangers’ stay for another 6 months in Sindh — from September 14, 2023 to February 2024.

Sindh Inspector General of Police (IGP) Riffat Mukhtar briefed the caretaker cabinet about the overall law and order situation in the province with special reference to kidnapping for ransom cases and informed that during the current year, as many as 218 people had been kidnapped out of them 207 have so far been recovered.

There are 11 people still under the captivity of the kidnappers, the IG told the meeting and said of these 11 people seven were from Larkana, 3 from Shaheed Benazirabad and one from Sukkur districts.

The police chief shared the details of the individuals kidnapped from the katcha areas. He said Naveed Lashari was kidnapped from Jacobabad, Sagar Kumar from Garhi Yaseen, Qadeer, Zaheer, Gulbahar from Kashmore and Shahid and Jabbar from Sukkur, Soomar from Qasimabad Hyderabad and while Farhan and Shahid were made hostage by dacoits from Naushehro Feroze.

CM Baqar ordered the IGP and other law enforcement agencies to take action for the early release of all remaining hostages from their captors.

Justice Baqar also directed the IGP to keep in touch with the family members of the hostages and make them aware of the efforts being made for their release.

Read more: Pakistan & Australia agree to expand military cooperation

Moreover, the caretaker chief minister directed authorities concerned for immediate suspension of internet services in the riverine areas of the province.

The cabinet was told that there are 238 villages in Sindh’s katcha area and eight police stations and 20 police checkposts have been established by the Sindh Police to provide security to the people living there.

CM Baqar directed for the posting of honest and reputable police officers in the Katcha area and those who could not perform well should be removed from the posting.

He also sought detailed reports regarding the status of 11 hostages and ordered them to start construction work on Ghotki-Kandhkot bridge over the Indus River so that the law and order situation could be improved.

The cabinet also decided to launch a police operation against dacoits and drug mafia in Katcha and other areas of the province with the help of the Pakistan Army, Rangers and Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) as it was the duty of the government in office to provide a peaceful and secure environment to the people of the province.

The CM also directed the police and law enforcers to control the street crimes in urban areas of the province and ordered that aggressive operations be initiated against street criminals.

Baqar said law and order in the province were not satisfactory as no one could walk freely by taking a mobile phone in one’s hands and this situation could not be tolerated.

All ministers, advisers, special assistants to CM, Sindh Chief Secretary Dr Fakhar Alam, Principal secretary to CM, advocate general, prosecutor general and other concerned officers attended the meeting.

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