The widow and mother-in-law of a man shot dead by CIA operative Raymond Davis last year in Lahore were killed on Monday over a ‘matrimonial dispute’.
The man, Faizan Haider, and another Faheem Shamshad were shot dead by Davis in a downtown neighbourhood of Lahore on January 26, 2011 sparking a major diplomatic row between Pakistan and the United States.
Davis was arrested, but set free after $2 million was paid in Diyat (blood money) to the families of his victims. His release and subsequent repatriation to the US triggered street protests in Pakistan.
Zahra Faizan, 24, and her 50-year-old mother, Nabeela Shehzad, were allegedly shot dead by Muhammad Shehzad Butt at their home in the upscale Johar Town neighbourhood of Lahore after a family quarrel.
“The family had been quarrelling over the refusal of Faizan’s widow to remarry. However, investigation will reveal the real motive behind the double murders,” Athar Waheed, superintendent of police Saddar division, told The Express Tribune.
Family sources claimed that Butt was opposed to Zahra marrying anyone but Faizan’s brother, while his daughter and wife did not agree to it.
Sources said that Zahra had secretly married another man a month ago, and when her father came to know, he became furious and killed his daughter and wife on Monday.
A security guard at a nearby school said that he heard gunshots at around midday and spotted Zahra’s body outside the house and Nabeela’s lying on the porch.
The family had moved to their present mansion from the low-income Shahdara area of Lahore in April 2011, SP Waheed said. Sources added that the family had purchased the house after getting Rs 33.33 million as their share in the blood money.
Johar Town police said Nabeela was shot dead inside the house, while Zahra was chased and killed on the street as she tried to flee.
Neighbours told The Express Tribune that they often heard the family quarrelling in the house. Initially, the family resisted the police who wanted to take the bodies to a hospital for autopsy. However, later they relented.
Shumaila, the wife of the second Raymond Davis victim – Faheem Shamshad – had committed suicide last year. Shumaila had consumed poisonous pills fearing Davis would be released without a trial.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 1st, 2012.
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