Suhai Aziz, a lady police officer in Pakistan, is being hailed for her bravery and valor that saved the lives of diplomats during a terrorist attack at the Chinese Consulate in Karachi, last week. The heroic act of Suhai Aziz, the Assistant Superintendent of Police, has turned her into a celebrity overnight.
As stories of police officer’s bravery during the terrorist attack at China’s Consulate in Karachi started to emerge, the 30-year-old mid-career officer became an internet sensation worldwide.
Here’s how the story unfolded. When three terrorists armed with AK-47 and suicide vests unleashed gun and bomb attack at China’s Consulate in the heart of Karachi, one of the initial responders, a policeman deputed at the gate, attempted to stand up to the attackers with just his old rifle.
He couldn’t put up a resistance for long yet managed to inform his senior police officer about the attack on time. The area falls under the jurisdiction of Suhai Aziz, the lady Assistant Superintendent Police in the city’s Clifton area.
Within minutes of the attack, Suahi reached the scene holding only her official 9MM automatic pistol in her hand. Flanked by her bodyguards and backed by her team of few policemen, the fearless police officer managed to enter the compound. Her priority was to save the diplomats and civilians inside the diplomatic mission.
This was the first occasion in Pakistan when a lady police officer was leading security forces against terrorist attack. She expertly commanded security operations until the last terrorist perished.
Credit where due
Suhai Aziz, however, gave credit to the martyred policemen. She was heading elsewhere when I heard about the attack and rushed to the scene.
“Glad, we made it on time to safeguard the diplomats and locals inside the compound. Credit goes to the martyred policemen and security forces who repulsed attack with courage and professionalism,” ASP Suhai told Al Arabiya English. Her commando skills and nerves of steel made headlines after she repulsed the attack saving dozens of lives including diplomats.
“She did us proud. The way she responded to the terrorist attack speaks of her bravery, valor and passion. This is what we expect from our officers,” Mohammad Tahir, former Inspector General of Punjab police, now commandant of National Police Academy Islamabad, told Al Arabiya English.
“She belongs to rare breed of Pakistan’s Police Service who know how to take the bull by the horns. I’m proud to be commandant of National Police Academy which nurtures police officers like Suhai Aziz,” Mohammad Tahir, one of the most respected and professionally sound police officer of Pakistan Police Service added.
He was the first senior police officer to congratulate lady police officer on her heroic act. Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Chief Minister of Sindh province, Murad Ali Shah, paid rich tributes to the lady police officer.
“Pakistan is proud of all its brave daughters like SP Suhai Aziz. She was among the first to reach the Chinese Consulate and successfully lead the operation that thwarted the terrorist attack in Karachi today,” Shah Mahmood Qureshi tweeted.
Suhai Aziz hails from a lower middle class of rural Sindh’s Tando Muhammad Khan district. Her relatives disowned her parents as they allowed her to get higher education.
Beating all odds, she earned a Master’s degree in Economics. She joined the service as Assistant Superintendent of Police on November 18, 2013 after passing central Superior Service.
Her colleagues this correspondent spoke to believe her act of valor have shown women are not less than their male colleagues.
“She’s a gem. Believe me, she has proved women can compete with their male colleagues in any field,” Samiya Noreen, one Suha’s colleagues said.
In Pakistan, police officers often serve on the front lines against terrorists and militants. A larger numbers of police officers and men have laid lives battling militants for long time.