KHAIRPUR: At least 10 people were injured on Friday in a crossfire during clashes that sparked late Thursday night between the members of Shia and Sunni sects.
Deputy Commissioner Khairpur Ghulam Abbas Baloch said that the clashes began when Sunni-owned shops were set ablaze in retaliation to a Shia-owned paan kiosk being set on fire.
Baloch said that the police resorted to shelling in order to control the situation. He added that the people who are involved in inciting the clash will be arrested for interrogation.
He revealed that people were firing at each other while hiding inside their houses.
Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Police Sukkur Dr Amir Ahmed, while claiming that the situation was “95% under control”, rejected reports of imposing a curfew in the area and said that the people were only asked to remain in their houses for the time being.
He said that clerics from both the sects will be drawn into negotiations and that this time the police will settle the matter “once and for all”.
DIG Ahmed said that the Shia and Sunni sects in Khairpur district continued to clash with each other despite recurring dialogues that were put into place.
“This time around, the police will take action.”
Sources said that on Thursday night, members of the Shia sect opened fire at a Sunni mosque while a sermon was underway, which stirred tension between the two sects.
People from both the sects set alight shops in Naya Goth, Panjpulla Chowk, Achi Khohi, Mohalla Ali Murad areas.
Assailants also attempted to set ablaze a crockery shop owned by former senator Pakistan Muslim League – Funtional (PML-F) Chaudhry Sajid Hussain Zaidi, but police had thwarted the attempt.
A heavy contingent of Rangers and police has been deployed in different areas of Khairpur.