ISLAMABAD: The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), on Thursday, arrested a proclaimed offender in former Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) chief Maulana Azam Tariq‘s murder at Islamabad airport.
Syed Muhammad Sibtain Kazmi was identified and arrested by immigration officials as he tried to flee to the United Kingdom via Doha on Qatar Airline’s flight QR-633.
Wanted in the former SSP chief’s murder case, the government had announced Rs1,000,000 bounty for Kazmi’s arrest.
The banned outfit now operates freely under the name of Ahl-e-Sunnat Wal Jama’at (ASWJ).
Tariq, the then MNA, was gunned down along with three of his guards and a driver in the limits of Islamabad’s Golra police in 2003, while returning from his constituency, Jhang, to attend a National Assembly session.
Following the assassination of the former SSP leader, his supporters went on a rampage in the city and burned down a cinema hall in Melody Market, killing two people inside.
SSP was banned for being a terrorist outfit in 2002. The organisation, which has a sectarian, anti-Shia ideology, is also believed to be linked with the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. According to the late Minority Affairs minister, Shahbaz Bhatti, SSP was behind the Gojra riots, while Wikileaks cables identified a number of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan members as having their origins in the SSP.