KARACHI: Eight suspected terrorists said to be affiliated with Ansarul Sharia Pakistan (ASP) were killed after a fierce shootout with the Rangers and Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) personnel in Baldia Town of the metropolis on Saturday night, said police.
Police officials said the paramilitary troops and CTD personnel jointly carried out a targeted raid in Raees Goth of Baldia Town after receiving an intelligence tip-off about presence of ASP militants the area. On seeing the personnel, the terror suspects opened fire at them and tried to escape, they added.
In retaliatory firing, five suspects died on the spot and three others succumbed to their injuries while they were being taken to a hospital, police further said.
The Rangers spokesperson said one of the paramilitary personnel and two CTD personnel were also injured in the gun battle.
Arms, ammunition and explosives have been recovered from the possession of the killed terrorists, he added.
Militants with a highly-educated background
The militants behind last month killings of two policemen and assassination attempt on Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) senior leader Khawaja Izharul Hassan are ostensibly not driven towards terrorism out of poverty or illiteracy, but to the contrary they are some highly-educated blokes.
Ansar ul Shariah comprises 13 men and most of them received education from top elite universities of Karachi.
The militant organisation was founded by Shehryaruddin Warsi alias Dr Abdullah Hashmi back in 2015 and it first came to light with murder of late colonel (retd) Tahir Nagi, a well-known trainer for the Pakistan military recruitment test of Inter Services Selection Board in Karachi, on April 05, 2017.
Since then, the militant outfit has become a symbol of terror across the megapolis and the law enforcement agencies right after the incident started investigation about the organization. The law enforcers came to know of their existence as they had left pamphlets of their organization at Nagi’s murder scene.
The laptops and mobile phones recovered from house of the group’s Vice-Chief Abdul Karim Sarosh Siddiqui in a raid on the night of September 3 following assassination bid on Izhar have revealed that they had links with global terror outfit Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. This was the first raid against Ansar ul Shariah. LEAs also recovered documents having plan charted out to attack the MQM-P leader.
The group members had received militancy training in Shorawak area of Helmand province, Afghanistan. The militants used to make video of their target and send back to Afghanistan leadership.
Until now, the group was asked to generate funds and operate by themselves, however soon Al-Qaeda was going to recognise Ansar ul Shariah and take oath from their members.
Main purpose of Ansar was to spread terror across Pakistan as a faction of Al-Qaeda.
Names of Ansar ul Sharia members with their educations:
Shehryaruddin Warsi alias Dr Abdullah Hashmi (MSC Applied Physics)
Vice-Chief Abdul Karim Sarosh Siddiqui (MSC Applied Physics — final year)
Syed Muzammil Junaidi (Bachelors in Engineering)
Danish Rasheed (MBA)
Muhammed Wanarul Haq (ACCA)
Muhammed Talha Ansari (Masters in Engineering)
Saad Jamal (MS)
Hassan Haroon (gold medalist — Masters in Engineering)
Hassan bin Nazeer (Masters in Engineering)
Kamran alias Usman (unknown)
Arsalan Baig (unknown)
Police foil major attempt
A day earlier, police claimed to have foiled a major terror plot in the metropolis after recovering explosives and weapons from a vehicle during snap checking.
Police said the explosives were stashed inside a vehicle carrying garments.
Three rockets and five mine bombs were seized during the snap checking at industrial area of New Karachi, SP Shabbir Baloch claimed.
He said that the police were conducting the routine snap checking when it tried to intercept a garments-laden vehicle over suspicion.
The driver did not stop, however, police managed to halt the vehicle after a chase, the cop further claimed.
Two suspected militants affiliated with Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) were also claimed to have been arrested. The arrested suspects have been identified as Muhammad Sultan and Abdul Rehman alias Shakir who were also booked in a case under Anti-Terrorism sections, police said.