Karachi: New Hazards

Tushar Ranjan Mohanty Research Associate, Institute for Conflict Management

On August 17, 2017, one Police Qaumi Razakar (PQR), Jamshed Ahmed (42), was killed and another PQR, Gulzar (30), was injured in a firing incident at the Northern Bypass within the jurisdiction of the SITE Superhighway Industrial Police Station in Karachi, the provincial capital of Sindh. Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Malir Town, Rao Anwar disclosed that the two Razakars were standing at a Police chowki(Post) near the bypass, when motorcycle borne terrorists opened fire on them. This was the third attack on the Police in Karachi by the newly-emerging terrorist formation, Ansar-al-Shariah Pakistan (ASP). The group claimed responsibility for the attack in pamphlets thrown at the crime scene immediately after the attack.

Bihar: Resurgent Threat
In the intervening night of August 2 and 3, 2017, around 100 Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) cadres reportedly blew up a mobile tower, abducted three gatemen from different railway level-crossings and also laid siege to the Danapur Durg Express train for a few hours, abducting the cabin man, in the Lakhisarai District of Bihar. "Around 100 rebels were involved in the abductions from the level crossings, located in a 10-km radius," Inspector General of Police (IGP), Bhagalpur Zone, S.M. Khopde disclosed. They then hijacked the train. A statement by the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) noted, "Train no-13288 Danapur Durg Express train was hijacked near the Bhalui station [in Bhimbandh area of Lakhisarai] around 2:30 am (on Thursday). The cabin man who was on duty was also abducted." The siege ended after an exchange of fire took place between personnel of the Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA), a specialised unit of CRPF proficient in guerrilla tactics and jungle warfare, and the hijackers. However, no casualty was reported from either side. The gatemen and the cabin man were subsequently released.
Manipur: Rising Ripples
On July 17, 2017, four civilians and one Assam Rifles (AR) trooper were injured when a powerful Improvised Explosive Device (IED) exploded at Khurai Ahongei in Imphal East District.
Salvaging Order
At least three Hizb-ul-Mujahideen (HM) terrorists were killed during a 30-hour long encounter in the Bamnoo area of Pulwama District. The encounter began in the morning of July 3, 2017, when the Security Forces (SFs), who had launched a search operation following a specific tip-off about the presence of terrorists in the area, were attacked by the armed group inside a house. Two terrorists were killed on the same day, while another was killed in the morning of July 4. Four SF personnel sustained injuries.
Chhattisgarh: Challenges Unabated
Two Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) cadres were killed in an encounter with Security Forces (SFs) in Gandai Forest near Suktara village in the Rajnandgaon District of Chhattisgarh on June 28, 2017. During subsequent search operations, SFs recovered their bodies, as well as a .315 bore gun and a pistol. Superintendent of Police (SP), Prashant Agrawal stated, "Identity of the killed rebels is being ascertained. Although prima facie it is clear that they belonged to expansion team of ultras who are making attempts to expand their base along the border of Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh." A joint squad of the Special Task Force (STF) and District Police Force had launched an operation in the area, acting on inputs about the movement of a vistaar(expansion) party of Maoists in the forests over the preceding few days.
Kurram Agency: Sectarian Monster Revisited
At least 67 persons were killed and more than 200 injured in back-to-back explosions in the Turi Bazaar area of Parachinar, the headquarter of Kurram Agency, in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), when the market was crowed for Iftar and Eid shopping on June 24, 2017. Initially, an explosion took place at the busy Turi Bazaar, moments after an Al Quds Day (an international day of solidarity with the Palestinian people) rally had concluded at the centralImambargah (Shia place of worship). When people rushed to the spot to remove the injured and bodies, the second blast, which was more powerful, took place resulting in even greater death and destruction. The al-Alami (International) faction of Lashkar-i-Jhangvi (LeJ) claimed responsibility for the twin bomb blasts, issuing a statement that it was targeting Shias and threatened more attacks over "Pakistanis fighting against Sunni militants in Syria's civil war".
Balochistan: The Chinese Chequered
The Islamic State (IS, also Daesh) on June 8, 2017, claimed the killing of two Chinese nationals who had been abducted from the Jinnah Town area of Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan, in the afternoon of May 24, 2017. Amaq, the IS propaganda agency, declared, "Islamic State fighters killed two Chinese people they had been holding in Baluchistan province, south-west Pakistan." The Chinese couple, Lee Zing Yang (24) and Meng Li Si (26), were studying Urdu in Quetta, where they reportedly also ran a Mandarin language course.According to Deputy Inspector General Police Aitzaz Goraya, unknown abductors, wearing Police uniforms, had forced the two foreigners into a vehicle at gunpoint and driven away. They also tried to overpower another Chinese woman but she ran away. A man present at the site attempted to resist the kidnapping, but was shot at by one of the abductors. So far no local group has claimed responsibility for the incident (abduction and subsequent killing). Reports speculate that the actual perpetrators were linked to the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi al Alami (LeJ-A), the international wing of the LeJ, which believed to be affiliated to Daesh.
NSCN-K: Decisive Moment, Uncertain Outcomes
Shangwang Shangyung Khaplang widely known as S.S. Khaplang, the 'chairman' of the Khaplang faction of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-K) died in the evening of June 9, 2017, after a prolonged illness in a hospital at Taga in the Sagaing Division of Myanmar. Confirming his death, Indian intelligence sources disclosed that Khaplang, who belonged to the Hemi Naga tribe, had lately moved to Taga, the NSCN-K's headquarters, from his native village Waktham, east of the Pangsau Pass on the Arunachal Pradesh-Myanmar border. According to reports, Khaplang is likely to be buried near the 'NSCN-K Council Headquarters' in Taga in Myanmar on June 12, 2017. Athong Makury from the 'Council of Naga Affairs (CNA), the apex body of Naga people in Myanmar, announced on June 11 that the funeral would take place in the presence of "revolutionary parties of WESEA Region and civil representatives from all the Naga inhabited areas."
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