A drug addict and father of six is on the run after strangling five of his children to death in Matiari district overnight Thursday, apparently believing the ‘sacrifice’ would endow him with magical powers.
Ali Nawaz Leghari gave some sedatives to his two girls and three boys – identified as Haseena, 15, Humera, 4, Mukhtiar, 12, Shabir, 7, and Zameer, 3 – before strangling them to death in Saeed Khan Leghari village, near Hala town. The wife and the eldest son of Ali Nawaz had left the house two days ago after the couple had a bitter quarrel.
“The man’s financial condition was bad but he was also learning black magic and it seems that he made the sacrifice to excel in the craft,” according to police officer Qamaruddin Rahimo.
SSP Matiari Amjad Shaikh confirmed the incident which occurred while Leghari was undertaking a 40-day ‘Chilla’ prescribed to him by a Pir that he hoped would teach him the art of alchemy.
Sabir Hussain Leghari, the eldest son of Ali Nawaz, told SSP Shaikh that his father was a drug addict, but these days he was obsessed with black magic. “Every midnight, he would draw a circle around him and do incantations,” he said, adding that his father tried to drug his little sister on Tuesday but he spotted him which resulted in a quarrel.
After the fight, Sabir, along with his mother, left the house to go and stay with his grandparents. With the pair out of the way, Ali Nawaz was able to successfully carry out his plan to sedate the remaining five children and then used a rope that was found at the scene to strangle them. “He strangled them one by one inside the room and later dumped them on a bed in the courtyard,” police officer Rahimo said, adding that the police were now hunting Ali Nawaz down.
Dr Shafeeq Memon, who conducted the postmortem on the bodies, confirmed that the children had been drugged before being strangled to death.
DIG Hyderabad Rangers Dr Sanaullah Abbassi said the family told the police that Ali Nawaz wanted to ‘sacrifice’ his children believing that it would endow him with magical powers. “Apparently, he was driven by his obsession with black magic,” he told The Express Tribune.
SSP Shaikh said that after killing his children Ali Nawaz walked over two kilometres to the main road where he caught a bus to travel to Hyderabad. The bus driver told the police that Ali Nawaz got down near Central Jail Hyderabad.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 10th, 2015.