On Wednesday, news outlets report that a young man was “brutally murdered” in an extrajudicial killing that took place in Benazir Park in Karachi. According to Express, the man was accused to be a “snatcher,” or a robber, and was arrested by police who then handed him over to Ranger personnel who cornered him and then shot him in the stomach, despite the man’s pleas. The man is reported to be a ‘matric’ student, as well as the brother of a Samaa television reporter, and he died on the spot.
News outlets continue to play the footage of the shooting over and over again on television, which garnered much discussion on Twitter. Ammar Yasir tweeted, “Just watched the Samaa footage and I feel like throwing up. This happened in Karachi, imagine the extrajudicial murders in Balochistan,” while Tammy Haq noted, “Pakistan is a state of anarchy. Anyone can do what they like and get away with it.”
Express 24/7 reporter Shaheryar Mirza (@mirza9) tweeted, “Nothing shocking about this killing. What’s shocking is that it was caught on tape. Rangers have done this countless times before.”
As details unfold, it also is evident that Ranger personnel and police officials previously lied about details of the shooting, previously stating that the young man was armed and that 15-20 witnesses could testify to that. But, thanks to the footage, we now see that he was unarmed. In other words, noted Mirza, they were “caught red-handed.”
Hundreds of people have organized a “peaceful sit-in” outside the Chief Minister’s house in Karachi in protest of the killing. MQM leader Wasay Jalil told Express, “Karachi has seen in its past extrajudicial killings…but the people of Pakistan will lose further confidence in the police…and law enforcement officials.”
CHUP will continue to provide updates of this tragic killing as more details come in, but feel free to share your thoughts and reactions in the comment section.
UPDATE 1745 EDT: Express reported, “Five men from the Ghazi wing of the Rangers are said to be involved in the incident, of whom two have been arrested.” The news agency further noted, “Initially, the police and Rangers had claimed that they were informed that a dacoit had held a family hostage in Benazir Bhutto Park. The security personnel claimed that they went inside the park and asked the man to surrender. When he refused to do so, the Rangers shot at him in retaliation. Shah was injured and died after reaching Jinnah Hospital, security personnel said.” Obviously, that was not the accurate report of the incident.
UPDATE 6/9: According to the Associated Press, Pakistani authorities are now investigating the video “as hundreds of angry mourners attended his funeral.” Here’s the account of the shooting:
It showed a man in civilian clothes wrestling what appeared to be a gun out of Shah’s hand and kicking him toward a group of Rangers. Shah said it was just a toy gun as he pleaded with a Ranger who pointed his rifle at his neck.
“I am helpless,” he said to the Rangers.
The men surrounded Shah and pointed their guns at him. He moved toward one Ranger with his arms outstretched, saying “No, no, don’t kill me brother.” He was pushed back and shot twice in the hand and leg.
Shah fell to the ground screaming and begged the Rangers to take him to a hospital, a longer version of the video posted on YouTube showed. They stood by as he writhed in an expanding pool of his own blood.
Shah was eventually taken to a local hospital but died shortly thereafter from “profuse bleeding,” said Seemi Jamali, director at the Jinnah Post Graduate Medical College.
The really sad part? Rehman Malik claiming the boy was a “criminal,” as if that somehow justifies this killing. Disgusting:
UPDATE 6/9 2000 EST: Another video is out (via Rabayl). So sad and disgusting: