Gangsters, arms dealers and the like have been gathering in and around Lahore recently through social media.
A group of these individuals is projecting criminals who were killed in disputes and belonged to the underworld as heroes on Facebook pages and websites. Lahore police have identified the members of this group and taken up the matter with PTA.
Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Operations Ismail Khattak has sent a letter to the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to shut down these social media pages and sites. The links to these websites and the names of arrested criminals are mentioned in the letter.
The SSP has said that the police has noticed that there are hooligans in the city that are presenting themselves as heroes via social media websites. He referred to a Facebook page named ‘Lahore Underworld’.
On this page, people are sharing stories of hostility towards law-abiding citizens. Criminal-minded individuals, including leaders of student groups, are being shown as brave heroes fighting against the law.
The SSP said that the majority of these miscreants are criminals involved in target killings and extortion. He added that the online space is being used to propagate the notion that it is all right to be above the law.
“After the police make an example of such criminals by killing them in an encounter, their stories are presented as those of bravery on media platforms followed by youngsters,” he said.
He added that this has attracted many followers.
Lahore police arrested a gang of youngsters a few months ago who posted their photos with weapons on Facebook. After identifying each other as like-minded people, they met each other and promoted crimes. The accused include Bale Khan and Saleem Khan Rahib Gull.
“To fulfill their ambitions, they began criminal activities and also killed people during incidents of robbery,” he added.