Fresh wave of violence claims five lives in Karachi

Three traders were gunned down this morning by motorcycle-borne unknown assailants at Rashid Minhas road in the heavily populated Gulshan-e-Iqbal town. "All three were fruit and vegetable merchants and were doing business in Karachi for a while now," the son-in-law of one of the victims told reporters.

The police also recovered a bullet-riddled body of police a constable from a graveyard in Malir while another one person was shot dead in Ranchore Lines area.

As the wave of target killings continued unabated in the city, the top brass of the Pakistan Rangers told a parliamentary committee they could eliminate this menace in a month's time if they were given more powers and a free hand.

"The Pakistan rangers can eliminate this menace if they are given a helicopter, 800 bulletproof jackets and a free hand in Karachi," a source quoted an official telling the parliamentary committee. The Express Tribune newspaper reported that the rangers force is facing financial troubles and requires close to half a billion rupees and a new helicopter to replace its old one, which was grounded last month.

The daily quoted official documents saying the demand was made during a closed-door briefing given to a parliamentary body which had visited Karachi. The meeting was said to have been called to discuss the issue of target killings, and deputy director-general (DDG) of the Rangers briefed the parliamentary panel on the overall law and order situation.

"If the government of Sindh gives us free hand, we can stop the situation of targeted killing within one month," a determined DDG Rangers was said to have claimed in the meeting, adding that the force was facing serious shortage of required resources and equipment. The parliamentary committee has now brought this demand into the notice of Interior Ministry which is the controlling authority at the federal level.

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