SHIKARPUR: Gunmen shot dead three Hindus in Shikarpur in a dispute over a dancing girl with a local Muslim tribe, officials said on Tuesday.
The incident took place on Monday in Chak town near Shikarpur city, 400 kilometres north of Karachi, the capital of southern Sindh province.
"Two men riding a motorbike opened fire at a clinic, killing three Hindu doctors and wounding a paramedic seriously," Pakistan Hindu Council chief Ramesh Kumar told AFP.
He said the dispute had erupted between the Hindu community and the local Baban Khan Bhayo tribe after local Hindu boys brought a Muslim dancing girl to the area.
"Police raided the house where the girl was dancing and arrested four boys," said Kumar.
He said that the issue had been taken to the local assembly of elders to be resolved peacefully after the ongoing Eid holidays, but before that could happen the shooting took place, he said.
Kumar said the Hindu community had sought protection from police after receiving anonymous calls threatening them with "serious consequences".
Sindh police Inspector General Mushtaq Shah also confirmed the explanation for the incident and the casualties.
Hindus make up less than two percent of the population of this Muslim nation of 175 million people.
Sindh observes 3-day mourning
A three-day mourning is being observed in Sukkur and adjoining areas against the murder of three Hindu doctors in Shikarpur district, reported Express 24/7 on Tuesday.
Following the incident, the SHO of Chak police station was suspended while the head constable was arrested on the directives of SP Shikarpur Junaid Shaikh.
Ten people were also arrested in different raids on the directives of President Asif Ali Zardari and Sindh Home Minister Manzoor Wassan; however, no case has been registered so far.
The President of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Karachi division Syed Najmi Alam, General Secretary Saeed Ghani and Information Secretary Latif Mughal strongly condemned the killing of the doctors. They demanded the government and the chief justice to take notice of the targeting of Hindus in parts of Sindh.
Earlier, Sindh’s religious minorities decided to take matters into their own hands and form a private body as a united front to represent themselves before government officials. The group decided they have faced enough injustice and plan to raise awareness about minority rights within these communities.
The kidnapping of Hindus have been on the rise, especially in the province of Balochistan where at least four Hindu traders have been kidnapped in the past 30 days, while Basant Lal, a paint shop owner, was was abducted while on his way home to Saryab Road from Liaquat Bazaar on Friday.