LAHORE - A petition has been filed before the Supreme Court seeking directions for the federal government to keep Rangers continue its operation without any hindrance to ensure peace in Karachi.

Watan party’s president Basim Shaukat Khan filed the petition through his counsel Barrister Zafarullah Khan in SC Lahore registry. The petitioner has made interior ministry, ministry of law and Inspector General Police Sindh as respondents in the petition.

The petitioner submits that there is serious dispute of jurisdiction between the central government and provincial government of Sindh going on regarding the action and powers exercised by the Pakistan Rangers as per agreement between federation and Sindh government over powers under section 5 of Anti Terrorism Act 1997 to the rangers for one year which has expired now.

The petitioner says that there is 80 percent of improvement in law and order situation in Karachi including target killings, extortions, and spread of terrorism in Karachi and other parts of the country. He says the country cannot afford these kinds of activities in this economic hub of the country. Corruption has also been eliminated in various government departments of the province, he said.

He said the operation has created fear among the corrupt politicians who are not trying to put restrictions on powers of the Rangers. Now, he said, there is dispute between federation and province over these unrestricted powers which are being withdrawn by the provincial government under the f4ar of their own high ups’ involvement.

The petitioner further says that there is now a question of interpretation has arisen on various articles of the constitution to settle the matter. He said among these are Article 147, and 148 of the constitution. It is the duty of the federation to protect every province against external aggression and internal disturbances and to ensure that the government of every province is carried out on in accordance with the provision of the constitution, he adds.

He states that according to Article 148 of the constitution, it is the duty of the province through its executive authorities to control the law and order situation and ensure implementation of fundamental rights of citizens. But apparently it seems that the provincial authorities have not fulfilled their constitutional duty, he submits.

He also says that it took about one year and at the costs of lives of many police and rangers personnel and money, citizens of Karachi can now move around safely and do their business.

He says Sindh government is trying to create hindrance is corrupt politicians sitting abroad and governing the country as per their desires. Unless the administration is depoliticized and political parties in Karachi who have their criminal wings are taken to the task under article 17 of the constitution and section 15 of political parties order 2002, there will be no rule of law or good governance and there will be no safety of fundamental rights. He says unfortunately the situation cannot be improved unless Rangers are allowed playing their role in the administration of Sindh province.

He has prayed the court that due to failure of the provincial government to maintain the law and order in the province, the federal government should be given free hand to deal with it. He also prayed the court that Rangers be allowed free hand in dealing with terrorists, land mafias, looters, robbers, kidnappers, corruption mafias of politicians and other high ups.