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Karachi blast: security cameras footage being examined

KARACHI: Investigators began reviewing the footage recorded by police surveillance cameras installed a few yards from the site of a bomb blast near Kala Board in Malir, where a total of four persons, including three policemen, were killed and four others wounded in an attack on a police van a few minutes after sunset on Tuesday, officials said.

Karachi blastPolice investigators associated with the Crime Investigation Department and the Special Investigation Unit (SIU) in coordination with the department`s IT section in the first phase tried to acquire the recording of the cameras installed at the Kala Board traffic intersection.

“At least two cameras are installed at that place,” said a senior investigator. “Though the site of the blast is a little away from the intersection, the footage may provide an idea of traffic movement on both sides of the busy road and the possible target of the attack.”

Similarly, he said, the nearest site of the surveillance cameras was the Star Gate traffic intersection, which was hardly a kilometre from the blast site.

The video recordings had always been very effective in investigating such cases and helped find key clues to pursue the case, he added.

Dr Seemin Jamali, the head of the emergency unit of the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, said the wounded were stable though a majority of them had suffered head injuries and fractures.

“Among the injured we have a 10-year-old boy, Mubashir, and Mobina Khatoon, a woman who was hit in the head and an arm. They with the other injured are stable. They might be passing through the area at the time of the explosion,” she added.

To determine the nature of the attack and movement of the suspected attackers, the police IT department that operates the 200 cameras installed across the city for traffic management has archived the entire 24-hour recording of the day for the investigators` assistance.

“On Sharea Faisal we have a camera each at the Star Gate intersection, Drigh Road, Karsaz, Nursery, Tipu Sultan Road, Baloch Colony, Regent Plaza and another couple of places,” said Tabassum Abbasi, Sindh police`s IT director.

“We were already on high alert because of Chehlum security and after the incident near Kala Board, our centre became more vigilant. Our system has the entire recording of the area of the incident, which would be available for investigations.”

The Sindh police had only this month taken over the operations of the 200 cameras installed across the city for traffic management under the e-policing project after the provincial ministry of information technology, which designed and financed the system, declined to run it due to financial constraints, official sources said.

With the beginning of 2011, the police acquired the operational control of the 200 cameras installed at 40 locations — mainly busy traffic intersections — in the city under an arrangement with the IT ministry that the police would bear the operational cost.

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