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Karachi police detain 10 injured Taliban suspects
Hospitals are strictly monitored, officials say
By Javed Mahmood
KARACHI – Police have detained 10 injured Taliban suspects who were brought from Waziristan, Malakand Division in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Bajaur and Khyber agencies to a private city hospital for treatment, police told Central Asia Online August 2.
“Ten injured militants – Abdul Hadi, Shareefullah, M. Ahmed, Bashir Ahmed, Ataullah, Ahmed, Mahmood, Amadullah, Naseebullah and Siddiqullah – were admitted to a private hospital in Gulistan for treatment,” deputy inspector general of police Shaukat Hayat told Central Asia Online.
Police acting on a tip raided the Darul Sehat Hospital surgical ward August 1.
“We have declared the hospital a sub-jail and detained the militants under tight security,” Shaukat said, adding that outsiders would not be able to enter the surgical ward, where police are holding the suspects.
The suspects had been shot while fighting security personnel in the tribal areas, he said. The names the authorities have could be false, he said, adding that police would determine the detainees’ real names during questioning.
A local Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan activist identified as Ilyas is believed to have paid the initial bill for their care and then disappeared, he added.
Central Asia Online contacted Dr. Nadeem Malik, a surgeon who is supervising the suspects’ treatment, but he said the hospital administration and police had asked him not to publicise any information on the case.
Militants brought to Karachi from elsewhere
During initial questioning, the detainees told police that the Taliban brought them to Karachi through Quetta aboard public transport, Shaukat told Central Asia Online.
The Taliban use different deceptive strategies to travel from one place to other, but security agencies in Karachi and other cities should adopt measures to control their militants’ movement, Mushtaq Shah, former inspector general of Sindh police told Central Asia Online August 2.
“During my tenure as inspector general of Sindh police, we foiled several attempts of the militants to carry out terrorism in Karachi,” he said. “I think the senior officials of all the security agencies should sit together to evolve a strategy to tighten security to control entry of Taliban in the city.”
Tight monitoring of hospitals led to arrests
Security forces are relying on a variety of strategies to better fight the militancy and one tactic involves trying to track down injured militants who seek medical care, Shaukat said.
“We have directed all the hospitals in the city to maintain a complete record of the injured persons, especially the dubious ones, and also report the suspicious case to the police,” he said.
Officials at Darul Sehat Hospital apparently heeded the order, calling security officials a few days ago when the men came to the hospital. That information prompted the August 1 raid, Shaukat said.
Shaukat termed the capture of the suspects a significant achievement by the CID in Karachi and said it indicates that the strategy of monitoring hospitals is effective in the fight against the militants.
Since January, Karachi police have rounded up 53 militant suspects, including the 10 in the hospital, he said. Police will continue interrogating the 10 and publicise more details soon, he added.