April 18, 2016

Pakistan Army fighting Chotoo and his gang with helicopter gunships

Chotoo worked as a security guard and police informer before turning on Pakistani State.

Chotoo's name popped up during the question of Kulbhushan Jadhav.

Pakistan Punjab police killed by Chotoo gang

Ghulam Rasool alias Chotoo, the ringleader of the Chotoo gang, against whom security forces have launched a major operation, worked as a security guard for MPA Atif Mazari for three to five years in Rojhan, according to police officials.

He also worked for the Punjab police as an informer till 2007 and used to inform police about gangs involved in robberies and kidnapping for ransom in Rajanpur and Muzaffargarh districts.

According to locals and police, Chotoo belongs to Bakrani clan of Mazari tribe of Rojhan area. He later developed differences with police over unknown reasons and established his own gang to carry out criminal activities.

Some small and prominent gangs operating in Rojhan, Dera Ghazi Khan and adjoining districts of Sindh and Balochistan also joined the Chotoo gang. They include Bilal alias Bilali Jaakha, Baba Long, Gumani Gopang, Sindhi group, Bosans of Muzaffargrah and Khalid Kajlani.

The Bilali Jaakha gang was formed by two brothers — Bilal Jaakha and Jugnu Jaakha. They are said to be implicated in a fake case for killing two sisters of Gopang tribe of Rajanpur. It is said the women were killed by their tribe but it implicated the Jaakha brothers in the case because of an old enmity.

The two brothers were reportedly acquitted of the murder charge by a court. During their time in jail they developed links with criminals and after their release killed their ‘enemies’ and joined the Chotoo gang.

The criminals who were declared proclaimed offenders in different areas of south Punjab and Sindh used to take shelter in localities under the control of Chotoo.

The small gangs, after kidnapping businessmen and professionals from areas as far as Karachi, Balochistan and Rahimyar Khan, sell them to Chotoo for Rs400,000 to Rs500,000. A former fugitive who had spent more than a year with the Chotoo gang said Chotoo got bigger ransom amount for their release.

The Punjab police have so far carried out six to seven operations against the Chotoo gang and lost at least 30 policemen. Some gangsters were also killed.

The riverine area of Kachi Jamal in Rajanpur, a stronghold of the Chotoo gang, has a population of more than 10,000 people living in small villages. They depend mostly on rearing animals and farming. Chotoo is known for helping the locals and never carried out any criminal activity in the area. But he made it a no-go area for police who found it almost impossible to get information about him from the locals.

Earlier, the Bosan gang headed by Zafar Bosan and Tariq Bosan were the uncrowned rulers of the area till 2003-04. They were later eliminated by police.

The biggest operation carried out by Rajanpur and Rahimyar Khan police against the Chotoo gang was in 2010 which continued for three months, but to no avail. The last operation was conducted in 2013.

During an operation in Kotla Mughlan area of Rajanpur some years ago, police, however, succeeded in recovering a doctor from the gang and killing a gangster.

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