Karachi crime rate increased extraordinarily after floods: police

Senators direct Sindh Police to crack down on criminal elements to curb street crime in metropolis

Asim Yasin
A policeman stands guard on a street in Karachi in this undated photo. β€” AFP/File
A policeman stands guard on a street in Karachi in this undated photo. β€” AFP/File

  • Karachi witnessing alarming rise in street crime, police admit.
  • Sindh Police says trying to curb incidents of street crime.
  • Incidents of snatching less than last year, police officials say.

ISLAMABAD: The port city of Karachi has witnessed an "alarming increase" in street crime after the flash floods in parts of the country, Sindh Police officials said Friday.

In a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior, the police officials said that half of the criminals caught by them belong to other parts of the country.

The meeting of the Senate body was held under the chair of Senator Mohsin Aziz.

Expressing concern over the sharp rise in street crimes in Karachi, the body directed the Sindh Police and other relevant departments to crack down on criminal elements.

The overall law and order situation in Karachi and particularly the performance of the Sindh Police in preventing street crimes, including theft, robbery, kidnapping, murder and target killings, were reviewed in detail.

The police officials told the committee that after the recent floods, there has been an "extraordinary increase" in street crimes in the city, adding that the police officers have been directed to lodge FIRs.

Sharing the data, they told that 42,669 crime incidents were reported in 2011, 39,694 in 2015, 61,244 in 2020 and 84,045 in 2021.

Moreover, 385 people were killed in 2018 and 393 people in 2021, while 369 suspected killers were arrested till August 31, 2022.

In 2018, 2,211 vehicles were snatched, 26,846 vehicles were stolen, and 15,678 mobile phones were snatched.

In 2021, 4,783 vehicles were snatched, 49,608 vehicles were stolen, and 25,000 mobile phones were snatched.

The Sindh Police told the senators that there was a sharp increase in street crime in Karachi in recent times and they are trying to curb the incidents of street crime.

The Senate committee was informed that the incidents of stealing mobile phones, motorcycles, and purses are less than last year as previously, most of the cases were not registered.

Member Standing Committee Senator Fauzia Arshad said that a huge number of street crimes were reported in the media and expressed reservations about the crime statistics given to the committee.

She said the reality seems to be different.

Senator Samina Mumtaz Zehri said that the police department did not even register an FIR when the phone of her acquaintance was stolen in Karachi.

She added it has also been heard that flood victims' women were raped under the pretext of giving aid and children were also abducted.

The officials of the Sindh Police told the committee there is a very low rate of rape cases in Sindh and Balochistan except in Machar Colony, an area of Karachi, where a high number of rape cases were reported.

In response to a question of the committee's chairman, Aziz, the Sindh Police officials believe that people from Afghanistan were involved in the sale of drugs.

β€œAll the Afghan refugees are not registered and steps are being taken to register and send them back,” they told the committee.