KARACHI: After a brief lull, targeted sectarian killings have resumed. At least four men among the nine shot dead across Karachi on Monday were apparently killed over religious beliefs.
In a brazen attack in Nazimabad, two motorcycle-riding assailants gunned down three shopkeepers all belonging to the Shia community. The armed men first shot dead two brothers, Syed Qamar Hussain, 50, and Syed Hasnain, 45, while they were sitting at their shops adjacent to each other. Qamar ran a general store while his brother used to sell vegetables.
The motorcyclists then went to the next street and killed another Shia shopkeeper, 52-year-old Mohammad Hussain. He owned a stationery shop.
During all this, two more suspected assassins waited on another motorcycle as the backup for the killers, witnesses said. The men appeared to be young.
Police said the attackers had come to the area after planning the killings carefully as they did not take much time to complete their task. The bodies were taken to Abbasi Shaheed Hospital.
After the attack in Paper Market, commercial activities in the surrounding areas, including Gulbahar, Old Golimar, Rizvia and Nazimabad, came to a standstill. Unidentified men fired aerial gunshots and a score of people staged a protest at the Golimar Chowrangi. The demonstration caused a massive traffic jam that even affected Saddar, Garden and Shahrae Pakistan.
The area DSP, Iftikhar Lodhi, said the killings bore the trademark of sectarian killings as many Shia men have been shot dead in a similar manner recently.
In a separate attack, a prayer leader of the Sunni Deoband school of thought was killed in North Karachi, Sir Syed police said. Two armed motorcyclists targeted Mufti Mauvia Abdul Mateen when he was on his way to the mosque for Zuhr prayers. Ahle Sunnat wal Jamaat spokesperson Maulana Saeed Akbar termed the killing a link in the chain of attacks.
A third-year student of the Baqai Medical University was shot dead on Northern Bypass, Sohrab Goth police said. Zohaib Nazir, 27, was driving in his silver Toyota Corolla to the university from his residence in Defence when he was shot in the neck, DSP Qamar Ahmed said.
Police have yet to establish why the victim was at Northern Bypass when he usually went to the varsity via Super Highway. Nazir’s wallet, cell phone and other valuables had not been snatched ruling out the suspicion of robbery.
DSP Ahmed believed the victim may have been killed during a kidnapping bid. Further investigation was under way.
Also in Sohrab Goth, an elderly man was shot dead by armed motorcyclists at a teashop in Lasi Goth. Abdul Sattar Burfat, 65, was apparently killed by land grabbers, police said.
A construction company worker, Nadeem Rajput, 32, was shot dead by two armed men in North Karachi, Bilal Colony police said. DSP Chaudhry Akhtar attributed his murder to a personal enmity. The bodies of two young men, Saeed Alam and Ameer Hussain, were found from Macchar Colony. “Both men were criminals and were shot dead over a personal dispute,” said Docks SHO Madad Ali Zardari.
Injured man dies
A scrap dealer, Khalid Pervez, who was shot at couple of days ago in Gulshan-e-Sikandarabad died at the Civil hospital on Monday, Jackson police said.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 25th, 2012.