At least one person was killed and two others were injured in separate incidents of target shootings in Gilgit-Baltistan on Friday and Saturday, as violence spilled over to other parts of the region following the Naran bus assault.
In a pre-dawn attack in Skardu on Saturday, armed men ambushed one Maulana Bashir, injuring him seriously. “He was going to the mosque for morning prayers when unidentified gunmen opened fire on him,” the SHO of the Skardu police station told The Express Tribune.
He said a case has been registered under the Anti Terrorist Act (ATA) and a manhunt has been launched for the suspects.
In the other incident, one Muhammad Ishaque from Mohmand Agency was shot dead by unidentified men in Nagar Valley of Hunza-Nagar district. “This is apparently a sectarian-motivated killing but let us investigate it first,” said an official, requesting anonymity.
In the third incident, an official of the district was shot and injured by unidentified men in Gilgit. DIG police Ali Sher told The Express Tribune that the police was investigating both the incidents and would hopefully make arrests soon.
Up to 11 of the 19 people killed in Babusar, Naran, were buried in their ancestral graveyards in Astore on Saturday.
Over a dozen gunmen forced passengers off four buses and shot them at point-blank range in the Mansehra district on Thursday. The ambush took place as the buses carrying over 100 passengers and headed to Rawalpindi from Gilgit, were stopped at dawn in the Babusar area.
“We are thankful to God there was no untoward incident anywhere during the burial in the district,” Astore deputy commissioner Momin Jan told The Express Tribune.
As per security measures, the local administration sealed the exit and entry routes till the completion of the burials.
Before the burial, the Shia community requested the government to regulate C-130 flights for members of the community and provided jobs to the heirs of the victims. They also demanded compensation for those killed.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 19th, 2012.