Karachi: 4 PPP activists shot dead
KARACHI: Three senior workers of the Pakistan People’s Party and a young member of the party’s student wing were shot dead in two gun attacks in less than 24 hours in the city, said police and party sources on Friday. The targeted killings angered party workers who brought the body of one of the victims from hospital in an attempt to stage a sit-in in front of the Chief Minister’s House but were stopped and tear gassed by law–enforcers at the Shaheen Complex traffic intersection.
Police said four senior workers of the PPP, including a former officer-bearer of the party, were sitting near Urdu Chowk in Sector 10 of Orangi when gunmen riding motorbikes pulled up there and opened fire on them before speeding away. All the four men sustained gunshot wounds, said a duty officer at the Mominabad police station. He added that they were rushed to hospitals.
DSP Tariq Malik said the victims, Rana Farhan aka Guddu, Nafees Siddiqui aka Munna Bihari, Umar Hayat and Gulzar, used to sit there in the afternoon as a matter of routine. He said Farhan and Gulzar were rushed to the Civil Hospital Karachi, where the former died during treatment. Siddiqui and Hayat, who were taken to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, also died during treatment, he said.
The officer quoted hospital sources as saying that Gulzar was under treatment. The other three victims had sustained multiple bullet wounds in the chest and abdomen, he added. “We have collected several spent bullet casings of 9mm and 30–bore pistols from the crime–scene,” said DSP Malik.
The killings caused fear and tension in Sector 10 of Orangi where shops and other commercial activities were closed. “Rana Farhan was a former general secretary of the party’s district west structure in PS–94 and the three others were senior workers,” said PPP district central president Sohail Abidi while speaking to Dawn.
As the news of the killing spread, enraged party workers and supporters who had gathered at the Civil Hospital took away the body. They attempted to march on the CM’s House but were stopped by the police from entering the ‘red zone’.
The law–enforcers fired teargas shells to disperse the protesters, who then staged a sit-in near Shaheen Complex on Dr Ziauddin Ahmed Road. While the chief minister was leaving for the interior of Sindh, he changed his plan on a request of Karachi PPP deputy general secretary Arshad Naqvi and visited the protesters. The chief minister listened to the marchers and assured them that the culprits would be arrested and punished according to the law.
On this assurance, the protesters dispersed peacefully and took the body to Urdu Chowk for burial. Earlier, a young member of the People’s Students’ Federation was shot dead in Gulshan-i-Iqbal, said a duty officer at the Mobina Town police station.
Saeed Husain, 29, was sitting outside his home in Scouts Colony with friends on Thursday night when he was targeted, the official said. The victim was rushed to a nearby private hospital, where he died.
Karachi PSF president Faisal Sheikh said the victim was a student of Karachi University and an active member of the students’ group.
Husain was doing masters in Sociology, he added. The body was handed over to his family after medico–legal formalities at the JPMC. An FIR (172/2012) was registered at the Mobina Town police station against unidentified men on a complaint of the victim’s brother, Mohammad Husain.