LAHORE: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) lawmaker Tahira Asif, who was shot and injured while resisting an apparent robbery attempt in the Iqbal Town neighbourhood on Wednesday, passed away early on Friday morning, Express News reported.
Shot four times, Asif was on ventilator since Wednesday and doctors administered over 100 blood bags.
She is survived by her husband, two sons and one daughter.
A number of MQM activists have gathered outside the Sheikh Zayed hospital in Lahore, where Asif was being treated, and chanted slogans against the Punjab government.
Just hours before she was pronounced dead, MQM chief Altaf Hussain had issued an appeal where he said that Asif’s condition was critical and urged workers to donate blood for her.
Her funeral prayers will be offered in Federal Colony after the Friday prayers.
Arrest Asif’s killers within 3 days: Altaf
Terming the murder of MQM MNA Tahira Asif an act of target killing, MQM Chief Altaf Hussain demanded that the government should arrest the killers of Asif within three days.
In a statement released by the MQM, Altaf said that if Asif’s killers were not arrested within three days, people will begin to wonder whether the government itself was involved in the murder.
Paying tribute to her courage and commitment to the truth, Altaf revealed that Asif had threats from religious extremists. He added that despite informing the local police and administration about the situation, she was not provided adequate security.
3 days of peaceful mourning
MQM Rabita Committee’s deputy convener Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui told the media that Asif had passed away. He demanded that the Punjab police to trace and arrest the killers.
“Such acts will not stop us nor scare us. We pray for her soul.”
The MQM also announced three days of peaceful mourning over the incident but said that business and transport services will continue as per their normal routine.
Shot four times
MNA Tahira was buying fruits from a stall on the main Hafeez Taib Road in Lahore on Wednesday when two armed men riding a motorcycle held her up at gunpoint and asked her to hand over her mobile phone and clutch, which contained important documents and cash.
According to the police, Tahira refused to hand over the valuables, raised alarm and tried to grab one of the robbers. Upon this, the gunmen shot her before fleeing the scene.
The MNA was accompanied by her daughter and driver, who immediately drove her to the Sheikh Zayed Hospital, where she was rushed into the operation theatre.
Medics said Tahira received one bullet in her abdomen, which affected her intestines while the other pierced through her left leg, beneath the waist and had affected the main blood vessel.
They said 27 blood bags were administered to the victim and the bullets were taken out from her body after the surgery. Later she was shifted to the ICU where her condition was said to be critical.
Iqbal Town SP Dr Farrukh Raza told The Express Tribune that the FIR of the incident was not lodged as yet as the victim’s family had not moved any application to the police station.
“Tahira’s husband Muhammad Asif was contacted by the police but he refused to file a complaint as he was busy with his wife’s operation,” SP Raza said, adding that the FIR will be lodged as soon as a complaint was filed with them by the family.
Politicians offer condolences for Tahira Asif