QUETTA: Gunmen opened fire on a vehicle in the Masjid Road area of Quetta city on Monday, killing four people from the Shia community, police said.
Two passers-by were also seriously wounded.
“All the four victims were Shia,” Fayyaz Sumbal, a senior police official in Quetta told media, adding that the attackers fled the scene after the shooting.
Rahim Khan, another police official in Quetta, confirmed the incident and said that the attackers came in a white-coloured car and sprayed bullets on the victims who were travelling in another vehicle.
“Apparently it was a sectarian attack,” Khan said.
The CCPO said that there is shortage of police personnel and that police officials cannot be deployed for every individual.
The dead bodies were shifted to a Civil Hospital Quetta while police officials cordoned off the area for further investigation.
“The firing spread panic in the area and the few shops that were then open, closed down,” said Express News corresspondent Mehmood.
“Raza Hussain, whose vehicle was fired at was the owner of an electronics shop in the area and was going home after closing shop,” reported Mehmood, adding that the incident took place shortly before Iftar.
The other three deceased were identified as Ali Raza, Idress and Raza Muhammad while Syed Faizul Haq and Taqi Muhammad were injured.
Hazara Democratic Party (HDP) condemned the killing and announced a shutter down strike for Tuesday to protest against the incident.
Balochistan Shia Conference, Majlis Wadat-ul-Muslimeen and other Shia organizations have announced three days of mourning in protest.
A number of protesters rushed to the Civil Hospital Quetta after the incident and blocked the Jinnah Road by placing barricades.
Governor Balochistan Muhammad Khan Achakzai and Chief Minister Balochistan Dr Abdul Malik Baloch strongly condemned the incident and directed authorities concerned for early arrest of perpetrators involved in the incident.
HDP District Secretary Bostan Ali while talking to The Express Tribune condemned the killing of Hazara community.
Majlis Wadat-ul-Muslimeen MPA Sayed Muhamamd Raza appealed to the government to take action against sectarian attacks.