12th May is remembered as one of the black days in the history of Karachi when the violence in city claimed more than 30 lives. Also known as black Saturday, people of Karachi can never forget the bitter memories attached to the day.
It was 13 years ago when the city witnessed violence that claimed lives of at least 35 people including two lawyers. Many others sustained injuries. Several vehicles were set on fire.The standoff began when former chief justice Iftikhar Muhammed Chaudhry, who was riding a popular movement then, arrived in Karachi on invitation by Karachi lawyers. Pakistan People’s Party, Jamaat-e-Islami and Awami National Party were allies supporting the top judge. Muttahid Qaumi Movement, an ally with former President Pervez Musharraf, was in power then.
The workers of the allied parties reached the airport to receive the top judge, when the violence began with free use of weapons.Chaudhry remained confined to the lounge of the Karachi airport all the day and had to fly back without attending the gathering.Several people including political leaders were arrested. Some got bail, too. However, the bereaved families of the May 12 violence await justice despite the lapse of 13 years.