Two killed as Malik Ishaq continues preaching tour

Published: September 19, 2011

Activists of Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LJ) escorting LJ's head Malik Ishaq, through Punjab clashed with locals in Alipur. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

LAHORE: 

It was all too predictable. After being released from jail on bail, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi leader Malik Ishaq’s presence has already managed to cause violence and death on Sunday morning when members of his entourage clashed with a Shia community in Muzaffargarh district, resulting in at least two deaths and ten injuries.

Ishaq, a leader of the banned anti-Shia militant organisation, has been charged with the murder of 70 people, most of them Shia. He was released on bail on July 16 and has been travelling the country, preaching his message of bigotry against the Shia community ever since.

Ishaq had planned on travelling to Alipur in Muzaffargarh district on Sunday. Supporters of his organisation, as well as the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (formerly the Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan), had begun preparations on Saturday night, putting up banners and chanting slogans.

The Shia community of Alipur, had raised concerns with the police over the intention of the LeJ leading a procession through a Shia neighbourhood. Police officials dispersed the LeJ supporters on Saturday night and assured the Shia community that the event would be addressed by ASWJ leader Khadim Hussain Dhiloon and would take place indoors.

“We believed the police’s assurances,” said Kazim Ali Haideri, a local leader of the Punjab Shia Ulema Council.

At 4 am on Sunday morning, however, a welcoming party comprising approximately 800 young men on motorcycles chanting anti-Shia slogans started to ride into Alipur on the road from Panjnad.

For three kilometres on either side of the road is a Shia-dominated neighbourhood called Ghalwaan. While passing through that neighbourhood, at a point called Petrol Pump Wala Chowk, the young LeJ supporters encountered members of the Shia community.

It is unclear exactly what happened next, but given the toxic mix of armed young men confronted with people they have been taught to hate, it is perhaps sadly predictable that somebody started shooting (both sides claim it was the other).

The shootout lasted for several hours, during which at least two LeJ supporters were killed. Another 10 people were injured, including six from the Shia community. At least one police officer, Subinspector Shaukat, however, was confirmed injured by the police.

Following the armed clash, around 9.30 am, both sides retreated into their respective sanctuaries. The Shia community regrouped at the Sallonwala Imambargah while Ishaq’s supporters gathered at the Madrassah Jamia Hussainia.

During the clash itself, most of the police in the area, barring a few officers who had been posted nearby, did not go close to the warring parties.

Until the filing of this story, both sides remained holed up in their respective hideouts. The police are trying to negotiate a way for both sides to eventually leave, but had not been successful as of the time The Express Tribune went to print.

“They provoked the clash,” said Haideri.

It is unclear how Ishaq was allowed to leave his hometown in the first place, since he is on an anti-terrorism watch list whereby he is required to ask permission before leaving the jurisdiction of his local police station.

(Additional reporting by Owais Jafri in Multan)

Published in The Express Tribune, September 19th,  2011.


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Reader Comments (24)

  • TRiz
    Sep 18, 2011 - 4:59PM

    Intentions behind the bailing and unleashing such beast are quite clear. Spread anarchy in all provinces, within provinces, among provinces. Create anarchy between all cast and creed on the basis of religion (Punjab), political(Sindh), cast(Baloachistan), inhabitants (K.P.K).
    Revolution is key to the solution… May Allah give Quaid-e-Azam another life or provide us such leader.

    Recommend

  • Majid
    Sep 18, 2011 - 5:04PM

    The law law enforcement agencies really need to reign in these brutes before we have a pogrom on our hands.

    Recommend

  • TRiz
    Sep 18, 2011 - 5:07PM

    People like these (unleashed monsters) didn’t even let our beloved prophet (PBUH) to live in peace. That’s why He(PBUH) migrates and finally build a new city.
    These monsters are the decedents of same family units it is in their blood to create anarchy.

    May Almighty give us enough life to see the “disastrous end result of these monsters” from our own eyes.

    Recommend

  • Sep 18, 2011 - 5:08PM

    I wonder why Pakistani Government releases a man who leads one of the most violent, extremist, terrorist groups…

    Despite giving fiery speeches preaching hatred and violence he has not been arrested again! it means there is something behind and the government does not want such harmful member of the society to be in prison!

    Recommend

  • TightDhoti
    Sep 18, 2011 - 6:20PM

    Strategic assets! Fight!

    Recommend

  • tony
    Sep 18, 2011 - 6:47PM

    Islam is religion of peace—- la ikraha fidin— but our dogmas and hardliners and give very brutal image of Islam. they are preaching hate and violence among muslims and trying to solve all the issues by sword.
    this is my humbel request please work for harmony, love, affection and peace.
    In pakistan we have saw a lot of intolerance on the name of Allah and Islam. please curb this sectarianism and promote LOVE.

    Recommend

  • Talha
    Sep 18, 2011 - 7:01PM

    I am with the Shia’s, if the government cannot protect the minorities.

    The minorities have the right to bear arms and protect themselves.

    Recommend

  • Schopenhauer
    Sep 18, 2011 - 7:49PM

    We, as Pakistanis, will never realize religious bigotry just divides and never unites. Specially Religious fighters is such a self contradicting phenomenon. These are hate mongers and cannot do good for any one.
    Recommend

  • FN
    Sep 18, 2011 - 8:06PM

    Long live the courts!

    Recommend

  • TightDhotiWithNoBrain
    Sep 18, 2011 - 8:12PM

    Strategic assets are also those target killers, whom we vote, who claims to be liberal and always fight on ethinic basis ….

    Recommend

  • Sep 18, 2011 - 9:07PM

    Last nite i heard an invitation by shia on loud speaker that all shian e haidar e karar should be togather in imam bargah salluwali alipur.and here they attacked on ssp.now we r in dangour becos ssp will revenge and the peace of city alipur will destroy.the torture began by shia and will end by ssp.both relegious groups should strictly banned in alipur .

    Recommend

  • faraz
    Sep 18, 2011 - 11:46PM

    @TightDhotiWithNoBrain

    Those ethnic gangsters only operate in Karachi. Rest of the county is a victim of the jihadi strategic assets that the state nurtured over past 3 decades. And they number in hundreds of thousands. After 40,000 deaths, come out of the state of denial.

    Recommend

  • khurram kaleem
    Sep 19, 2011 - 3:00AM

    This day have i perfected for you and chosen islam as your religion

    why do we need militant armed organization when the quran says that religion is complete

    Please someone ban both these organization

    Recommend

  • TRiz
    Sep 19, 2011 - 11:21AM

    The origin of this gangster group SSP is not old. If anyone of you could recall or get a chance to review their Vision Statement (or motive) on the basis of which this organization was formed:
    “They are followers of Sahaba, and according to their teachings they are protecting Islam and doing massacre on the name of Islam”. I don’t recall any Sahaba (True Companion of Prophet) who protect Islam in such way OR who encourages or backed such motive, these blockheads know nothing about the teachings of Islam. Most of the Muslim states are in such condition only because of these morons.

    On the other hand Shia (not originated now) they are the followers of the house-member-of-beloved-prophet.
    @HAMMAD: They can never attack their prime belief is to show power by defending so that it could leave a long lasting image on everyone’s heart. This defending also helps in revealing the faces of true ENEMY-OF-ISLAM (read the article again and note the names of moulvis with whom this Monster is wandering and staying).

    Recommend

  • Noise
    Sep 19, 2011 - 9:11PM

    Its clear the Shias were defending their town from an attack by brainwashed blockheads. Thank God they had the sense to arm themselvesRecommend

  • DR ALI MOSA
    Sep 19, 2011 - 9:15PM

    Dear Talha shia community is not minority its part of Islam we can say SHIA and SUNI is TWO hands of Islam plz plz plz plz plz plz Protect us from ISRAELI policy that Divide Muslims in parts

    Recommend

  • Aftab Kenneth Wilson
    Sep 20, 2011 - 12:32AM

    Please immediately stop this nonsense. We must stop behaving like stone age people. Where are law enforcement agencies, judiciary and the leadership of Punjab??????

    Recommend

  • Kashif
    Sep 20, 2011 - 2:07AM

    Govt is totally fail to give punishment to the bad peoples, we are behaving like animals, may b animals are now in better position than Muslims specially. Did PROPHET said to kill any human who is not willing to fight ??? these terrorist group thinks they r owner of this world. they forget ALLAH born every human, IF ALLAH HATE THEM then ALLAH will not born them…NO ONE have right to kill others or THINK he is Superior than others…ONLY ALLAH knows best.

    Recommend

  • Mohsin Ali Reza
    Sep 20, 2011 - 5:50AM

    @Talha:
    SHIAAS are not a minority. They are in majority. Everyone must know that in Pakistan, after Barelvi brothers, Shiaas are second in number. So it’s totally wrong to call them a Minority. They have been very active in the Movement of Pakistan (Quaid-e-Azam was also SHIA) and since then, they are contributing a lot in the well being of Islamic republic of Pakistan.

    Recommend

  • MUNIB
    Sep 20, 2011 - 12:12PM

    According to constitution the minority is a “non muslim” . Kindly be careful when using words.

    These all people (eg. Malik Ishaq) are out of control for everyone due to the support the get from local sect people and funding. Secular Barelviz, Secular Shiaz and all other secular groups need to come closer and join hands to fight this menace. Recommend

  • lady gaga
    Sep 21, 2011 - 2:28AM

    It does not matter what sect you belong to – as long as you are a citizen of pakistan you MUST have full and equal rights. The problem is our government who allows hate to be spread , the problem is our justice system which fails to convict terrorists, the problem is the police who hardly ever capture these terrorists and finally and most importantly the problem is my fellow citizens of pakistan who have become immune to murder in the name of Allah – be it shia , sunni , ahmadi or anyone elseRecommend

  • Nasir
    Sep 21, 2011 - 2:33AM

    Our justice system allows barristers to display hate messages against Ahmadis in public buildings. Our justice system allows its members to shower terrorists who have killed our most senior politicians with rose petals. WELL DONE MR CHIEF JUSTICE you are setting a great example for the rest of Pakistan

    Recommend

  • Nasir
    Sep 21, 2011 - 2:37AM

    @Aftab Kenneth Wilson: Hi Aftab the leadership of Punjab has got no backbone.

    Recommend

  • csmann
    Oct 17, 2011 - 5:22AM

    @DR ALI MOSA:
    look at this man’s hypocracy;you cant blame your faults on israel.THAT amounts to ignoring the problem;at least do justice to your prefix “DR”

    Recommend

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