Quetta: Baloch leader’s sons killed in gunbattle
QUETTA: Six people, including two sons of a Baloch nationalist leader, were killed in a gunbattle in the early hours of Wednesday in Kech district, said a spokesperson for the paramilitary Frontier Corps (FC).
However, the Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M) alleged that FC troops stormed the house of its central leader Ayub Gichki and killed his two sons and three relatives in cold blood.
Gichki is a maternal uncle of BNP-M chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal. The bodies were shifted to Turbat Hospital.
Dozens of BNP-M workers staged a demonstration outside the Quetta Press Club to condemn “target killing” of its activists in Turbat. They claimed the attack was a part of a preplanned campaign to eliminate BNP leaders and workers.
However, according to FC spokesperson Murtaza Baig, gunmen attacked a paramilitary patrol on Pasni Road in Turbat and tried to escape from the scene. FC soldiers chased the assailants who entered a house in Overseas Colony, near airport road.
After taking refuge in the house, the assailants opened fire and hurled hand grenades on the FC personnel. The exchange of fire which continued for several hours left five people, including an FC soldier, dead, Baig added.
He claimed that heavy arms and explosives were also recovered from the house.
“The FC officials kept police away from the scene of gunbattle and we don’t know what exactly happened,” a senior police officer told The Express Tribune by phone from Turbat.
Protesters said it was Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who had ordered a military operation in Balochistan in 1973. And now ethnic cleansing of the Baloch people was again being carried out during the Pakistan Peoples Party’s government.
“The FC personnel violated the sanctity of home and opened fire on innocent people present in the house,” Agha Hassan, BNP information secretary told reporters. The BNP announced ten days of mourning in protest against the killing of the five people.