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Ashura procession culminates peacefully amid fool proof security

KARACHI, Oct 25 (DNA): With the extraordinary security arrangements for the Ashura main processions in Karachi, the procession of 10th Moharram culminated peacefully.No untoward incident occurred and apart from heavy deployment of police and paramilitary Rangers, monitoring through 275 CCTV cameras and aerial surveillance, a great show of religious harmony was observed during all 10 days of Moharram. Sindh government, police, Rangers, intelligence agencies, political and religious parties played their role diligently.

As usual, Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) took lead on the political front to bring clefics and scholars from all school of thoughts on one table while MQM lawmakers, Coordination Committee and different wings especially the medical aid committee performed with high spirits to keep the religious and sectarian harmony in the city during Ashura days.

For the main Ashura event, the threats were high and Sindh police with the assistance of paramilitary Rangers and intelligence agencies took the challenge to make the even fully secure and they succeeded in their efforts.

Sindh police had made special and heavy security arrangements. Paramilitary Rangers also played their pivotal role while assisting police with equally heavy contingent of Rangers personnel deployed along with aerial monitoring of the procession routes.

Though there was no precedence of suspending the cellular network services in the city on 9th and 10th of Moharram, the services remained suspended on special request of the Sindh provincial government after the Sindh Chief Minister asked the province’s Chief Secretary to approach the federal interior minister for suspending the service. The pillion riding was already announced to face a ban in the city for two days of Moharram.

The Inspector General of Police, Sindh Ghulam Haider Jamali had held several special meetings to review and finalise the security arrangements. On 9th and 10th of Moharram, more than 18, 000 cops and officers of low, medium and higher ranks performed security duty from one end of the procession, Nishtar Park through Imam Bargah Hussainian Iranian in Kharadar.

On orders of the IG, more than 342 Imam Bargahs and 452 Majalis and 236 routes of processions in the city are provided special security to the Shiite mourners from 1st of Moharram through 10th of Moharram.

Strict round the clock surveillance through the command and control system at Civic centre and at IG’s office with 275 CCTV cameras was ensured and on night of 8th of Moharram, all shops and on route were sealed. All streets and link rods opening in main M A Jinnah Road were blocked with containers. In order to prevent any untoward incident, the cops on security searched the mourners before allowing them to enter the procession. The mourners had to walk through specially installed walk-through gates for the purpose.

Besides equally heavy deployment en route, paramilitary Rangers conducted aerial surveillance of the procession. Emergency was declared in all hospitals to tackle any untoward incident.

Earlier, Allama Abbas Kumaili opened the procession of 9th of Moharram by delivering a lecture on martyrdom of Hazrat Hussain (R.A) at the Nishter Park.

Sindh home minister Sohail Siyal, IG Sindh Ghulam Hyder Jamali and Additional IG Karachi Mushtaq Maher and paramilitary Rangers DG Major General Bilal Akbar also visited the central procession to review the security arrangements of the main procession.

Police through its own network had identified 216 matmi and tazia processions as most sensitive where heavy police force was deployed. On orders of IG 27,942 policemen were deployed in the city, 6,294 in Hyderabad division, and 2276 in Mirpurkhas, 7,623 in Shaheed Benazirabad division, 9,488 in Sukkur and 10,791 in Larkana Division. DNA

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