16 killed in Karachi violence

Karachi: At least 16 people were killed and dozens other injured today in the raging political-ethnic conflict in Pakistan`s financial hub, as an uneasy calm prevailed in the port city where peace has refused to return.

Police and rescue officials said 16 deaths were reported during the day from different areas of the city in shootings and arson attacks while television channels reported that 21 people had been killed.

"Three people were killed in a drive-by shooting in Karimabad late Sunday while eating at a restaurant while another three were shot dead in the new Karachi area," one police official confirmed.

The Sindh Home Department late night imposed an indefinite ban on pillion riding in the city just a week after lifting it.

Provincial information minister Sharjeel Memon said the government was forced to take this step in a bid to control the situation.

"We know it causes lot of inconvenience to the people but this measure is only for a few days until the situation improves," Memon said.

The death toll from shootings, target killings and arson attacks in the last three days has again jumped to around 40 taking the toll in the month of July to around 200.

Malir claimed that in some instances unidentified assailants had even fired rocket propelled grenades at some houses.

"A man was shot dead in front of our house he lay there in pain for three hours we couldn?t venture out because of the firing and there was no rescue or police team to help him out on time," a resident said. .