‘Black money’ behind Karachi militancy

KARACHI – Different political and religious groups are making around 230 billion rupees annually through various illegal activities in Karachi and a major political party is patronising much of the crime, alleged the paramilitary Rangers, who are at the forefront of targeted operation against the criminals in the city.
The revelation was made by the Rangers Director General Maj-Gen Bilal Akbar in a briefing to the provincial Apex Committee last week, and it has been publicised just a day before Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to the port city.
The Premier is scheduled to hold a meeting on law and order situation in the mega city. His visit has gained particular significance after India’s threatening statements and the admission at top level that it was pursuing a policy of fanning terror inside ‘other states’ (particularly Pakistan) to avert terrorism on its own soil.
According to a press release issued here on Thursday, Rangers spokesperson said that Rangers DG gave a comprehensive briefing to the Apex Committee meeting last week and unveiled root causes of crime and terrorism in Karachi. He told the committee that over Rs230 billion is collected illegally in Karachi annually by different political and religious factions.
According to Maj-Gen Bilal Akbar considerable chunk of this money is used for the purchase of arms and ammunition. He said that most of the crime is committed or patronised by a major political party in Karachi. One of the key sources of illegal money is the private distribution system of water. The money is also coerced out in the form of alms. The briefing also noted that the money made from sale of sacrificial animal hides is used for funding militant and terrorist activities.
Regarding land-grabbing in Karachi, the DG Rangers said that political parties, the City Government, District Administration and police personnel all are all involved in the activity. He added that the amount made from land-grabbing is used by political and religious parties to run their armed wings. He went on to say that there are three types of land-grabbing being carried out in the metropolis including grabbing of government land and property as well as private property.
Rangers DG said that the funds raised from the mentioned activities are used for gang-war amongst different factions in Lyari as well as other areas of the city while some important dignitaries in Sindh also receive their share. Illegal marriage halls, unlawful car parking business, match-fixing and money laundering all play an important role in promoting terrorism in Karachi, the press release stated. It added that cyber-crime, beggar mafia and external funding of seminaries also fan terrorism.
Regarding income sourced from,
The officer revealed that smuggling of Iranian petroleum products, especially diesel, is also a major source of funding crime and terrorism. The funds from this source too reach to armed groups of Sindh land lords, besides urban political tycoons and their armed militias. He further said that a systematic and regular distribution is in place for these amounts to reach certain influential people.

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