A high-level police meeting on Friday reviewed the list of members of banned organisations across Sindh and recommended to the home department to put several persons on the Fourth Schedule of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1997 so that their activities could be monitored ahead of the holy month of Ramazan.
The meeting was held at an office of the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) with Additional IG Dr Sanaullah Abbasi in the chair. It was attended by DIGs of three zones of Karachi and other senior officers.
The Fourth Schedule is a list of “proscribed” individuals who are suspected of terrorism or those who are affiliated with organisations suspected to be involved in terrorism or sectarianism.
“We have recommended 15 persons from South, 10 from East and 12 from West districts of Karachi to be kept under surveillance under Section 11EE of the ATA,” said Mr Abbasi.
He pointed out that they, for the first time, recommended that the names of members of the organisations banned by the United Nations should also be kept under surveillance.
The participants of the meeting also decided to meet again next week to discuss names of persons from 18 other districts of Sindh to be put on the Fourth Schedule.
The Sindh CTD chief said that surveillance had paid dividends in creating, maintaining and consolidation of peace in the province.
He disclosed that they would also approach the State Bank of Pakistan to monitor financial transactions of these people, foreign and local visits, and sources of their livelihood etc.
Besides, Mr Abbasi revealed that the CTD was creating a databank of terror financing from lower to higher hierarchy of terror groups and their links with each other in and outside the country.
He believed that this money trail will provide valuable information to investigators and allow them to identify those involved in terror attacks.
The police officer pointed out that the terrorists needed money to buy and prepare weapons and explosives, and carry out their atrocities.
He added that the CTD had been mandated to directly summon persons placed on the Fourth Schedule for questioning or verification.
“CTD’s responsibilities also include acquiring personal files of all fourth schedulers from district police, requesting the SBP to furnish details of bank accounts, seeking details of mobile connections or any other transaction by such persons,” he maintained.
The department was supposed to submit its surveillance report regularly to the Sindh IGP along with recommendations.
The counter-terror force chief revealed that a special software programme had been developed to centralise the data of fourth schedulers which could be accessed by several important branches of the Sindh police.
“Besides, the counter-terror force in collaboration with the Special Branch is working for automation of the Fourth Schedule data as per directions of IGP A.D. Khowaja,” he concluded.