Karachi: Three MQM activists, two Shias killed as target killings rage
KARACHI: Just when life was returning to normal and people started believing that the senseless violence in the city was coming to an end, targeted attacks resurfaced as 10 people were killed over the last two weeks. Monday was no exception when another five people, including three MQM activists, fell prey to target killings.
Late on Monday night, three activists of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) were targeted near the Alam Pride Apartment in New Karachi, close to a hotel. Police sources said the three identified as Adil, Irfan and Adnan were ambushed by four men on two motorcycles, who sprayed them with bullets and fled the scene, leaving them in a critical condition. The three had come to Bilal Colony in a jeep to see someone and were waiting when the came under attack.
The public present at the scene rushed the injured to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital (ASH). During treatment, all three victims succumbed to their injuries. MQM activists and leaders reached the hospital later. They staged a demonstration over the triple murder and demanded that the government bring the criminals involved to justice.
Tension developed in New Karachi Town after the incident as armed men resorted to aerial firing and forced shopkeepers to close their places of business. Investigators said that the triple murder was part of the renewed wave of target killings. They added that the deceased were residents of Gulistan-i-Jauhar.
In an unrelated incident that took place earlier in the day, Taseer Abbas, a man in his late 20s, was shot dead near Al-Noor Morr in the Samanabad police limits. Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO) Gulberg DSP Nasir Bukhari said law enforcers reached the spot and shifted the body to hospital. They also cordoned off the scene of the crime.
Abbas was pronounced dead the moment he reached the hospital as a result of three bullet wounds. Investigations found that he lived in Block 20 of Federal B Area and worked as a manager at the Bahadurabad branch of an international fast food chain.
He left his house on Monday morning and was on his way to work when he was ambushed by motorcyclists. The assailants opened fire, killing Abbas, and fled the scene of the crime. The SDPO said that the police found empty casings of a 9mm pistol from the scene, which will be sent to the Sindh Police Lab for forensic tests. Investigators believed that the murder was part of the ongoing sectarian violence.
Later, the family of the deceased took his body from the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital to an Imambargah in the Ancholi area for funeral prayers. The funeral prayers for slain Shia leader Dr Jaffer Mohsin, who was targeted two days ago in the Gulberg area while sitting outside his residence, were already being offered at the Imambargah when the body of Abbas arrived.
Following the prayers, mourners headed towards the Wadiy-e-Hussain graveyard in Sohrab Goth via Sharea Pakistan in the form of a procession. When they neared Ancholi, the aggrieved people staged a protest over the slaying of Shias over the last few days and accused a rival group of orchestrating the murders.
They also criticised law enforcers of failing to provide security to Shia leaders, and said they had failed to arrest those involved in the ongoing sectarian violence. During the protest, miscreants fired in the air and also attacked the media that was covering the procession. Unidentified people attacked the cameraman of the Geo TV network and damaged his equipment. The police, however, managed to intervene and rescued the media men from the clutches of the miscreants.
The bodies of Dr Jaffar Mohsin and Taseer Abbas were later taken to the Wadiy-e-Hussain graveyard, where they were buried. The mourners staged another protest near Ancholi as they returned from burial.
Meanwhile, miscreants entered the Gulberg area where they started firing in Samanabad, Gulberg and Al-Noor areas, causing panic in the areas. They torched two mini-buses, one at Al-Noor and the other close to the Water Pump Chowrangi.
Law enforcers entered the troubled areas and started teargas shelling to disperse the mob. They rounded some 30 to 40 suspects allegedly involved in disturbing the peace of those areas. After facing hours of resistance, the police finally managed to bring the situation under control.
In a separate incident, the tortured body of Abbas Ali was retrieved early on Monday morning from the Northern Bypass, Lasi Para. Mauripur police said that upon reaching the spot, they saw that the body of the young man, whose hands and feet had been tied with a rope.
The body was shifted to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital for an autopsy. Investigations identified the deceased as Abbas Ali, a resident of the Chakiwara area, who was abducted by unidentified criminals who, after brutally torturing him, dumped his body in the aforementioned area.
Investigators said they were trying to ascertain whether Ali was killed on sectarian grounds or due to a personal enmity.