A minority lawmaker of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) in Khyber-Pakthunkhwa was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Buner on Friday, police said.
Sardar Soran Singh, special assistant to K-P chief minister on minority affairs, became the fourth PTI lawmaker to be killed since the 2013 elections.
District Police Officer Khalid Hamdani told The Express Tribune that Singh was killed right next to his house in the Pir Baba area at 7:20pm. “It is premature to say it was a militant attack,” he said.
The DPO said the attackers were most probably on foot as the path to Singh’s house was such that he had to walk there himself.
He said that the government had deputed three police guards for his protection and a search operation had been launched in the area.
The provincial government’s spokesperson and Special Assistant to the CM on higher education and public relations, Mushtaq Ghani, said that Singh was not in the habit of using the services of his official guards during his stays in his village Pacha Kali. “Police officials in plainclothes were still deployed around his residence,” he said.
Terming the incident shocking, Chief Minister Pervez Khattak said that he was at a loss for words to condemn the attack.
Riaz Khan, a district council member and a PTI worker from the area, said that Singh was shot in the head. “A bullet…severely wounded (him) between his eyes and nose.” He was rushed to the district headquarters hospital in Buner but did not survive because of the severity of his injuries.
Khan said that Singh was on his way home and was shot dead right in front of his house, adding that the MPA was returning from a funeral.
Singh started his career in politics in 2002 and joined Jamaat-e-Islami. After nine years, he joined PTI in 2011. He was appointed as special assistant on minority affairs on September 3, 2013.
He was also a member of the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee and Evacuee Trust Property Board. Singh also hosted Za Hum Pakistani Yam for three and a half years with Khyber News, a television channel.
Two security personnel killed
Two security personnel were killed in three separate explosions in Mohmand and Kurram agencies of the Federally-Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) in a string of bomb attacks starting last week.
Security officials said that seven militants were killed in retaliation.
A Frontier Corps soldier was killed and two others were injured when their convoy was attacked by militants with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) in the Kurram Agency’s area bordering Khost early Friday morning. After the explosion the militants opened fire at a checkpoint. Officials claimed killing as many as seven militants in the ensuing exchange of fire.
Security officials in Peshawar confirmed the violent act near Baizo village at Shaheedano Dand, just on Pak-Afghan border in Kurram Agency. The body along with two injured was later airlifted to the nearby Combined Military Hospital.
Meanwhile in Mohmand Agency, an FC official was killed and another was injured after another IED exploded during a house to house search in the Aipy Kor Dewazai area in Tehsil Pindiali Lower Sub-Division, officials of Political Administration reported.
Another IED planted on a dirt road exploded, injuring a subedar and a sepoy.
The body of deceased Rahat Shah was handed over to his family while the injured personnel were shifted to the AHQ Hospital Ghallanai.
An indefinite curfew was imposed in the Dawezai area.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 23rd, 2016.
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