KARACHI: Not to cause any less devastation than the floods, target killings in the city continued unabated on Monday. Another Awami National Party (ANP) worker was gunned down near Caltex Petrol Pump, Civic Centre, on his way back from work.
Asif Jan, 55, was the brother of Pervez Khan, ANP MNA from Swabi. He was killed in the jurisdiction of the New Town police station.
Asif Jan was an accountant in the land department of the city district government Karachi. He leaves behind five children.
The family of the deceased has been diehard supporters of the ANP. Pervez Khan, elder brother of the deceased, is an active member of the party who won the National Assembly seat from Swabi in the 2008 elections.
However, Asif had migrated to Karachi more than a decade ago and had stayed out of politics. He lived a quiet life in Karachi.
The fact that he had never been active in the city’s political circles is clear from the fact that when The Express Tribune contacted ANP leaders Bashir Jan and Rana Gul Afridi and spokesperson Qadir Khan, none of them could provide any additional information except that already provided by the police.
“He was not an active member of our party and none of us really interacted with him,” admitted Bashir Jan, a senior leader of the ANP, Sindh chapter.
“You might get his detailed information from Bacha Khan Markaz in Peshawar.” However, the ANP spokesperson in Peshawar had little else to add.
“Asif passed most of his time in Karachi and we did not interact with him much. He was not active in politics of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa,” Khan said.
According to SHO Tariq Imran, Asif lived in the KMC apartments in PIDC. “His brother is an MNA but his political affiliations are not confirmed yet,” Imran said.
According to police, Asif was going home in his car with his driver Nisar when he was attacked.
“Witnesses say they were attacked by two unidentified bike riders,” the police official said.
Asif died immediately while his driver sustained injuries. The deceased and the injured were taken to the Liaquat National Hospital.
The attackers, who were wearing T-shirts and trousers, seemed to be in their 20s, ANP officials quoted driver Nisar as telling them.
Reaction in the city
After the incident, enraged ANP workers reached the JMPC and chanted anti-government slogans. However, this time no riots erupted. There were some reports of aerial firing in some parts of the city and shops closed down in different areas, but no further casualties were reported till 9 pm.
When the news of Asif’s death reached Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, people started gathering at the deceased’s family house. MNA Pervez Khan also cancelled his evening plans.
“I have received condolence messages from all senior members of the party and it looks like the party will have to reconsider its reconciliation policy in Sindh,” MNA Khan told The Express Tribune.
According to him everyone at home is devastated after the incident. “He was killed just because he was a Pakhtun, not because of his political affiliations,” Khan said.
Shahi Syed, ANP Sindh president, regarded the killing as an attempt to destroy peace in the city and stop the influx of IDPs from interior of Sindh to Karachi.
Meanwhile, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement also condemned the killing of the MNA’s brother and called it a conspiracy to destroy peace in the city.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 24th, 2010.
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