KARACHI: In what appeared to be part of the ongoing targeted killings on sectarian grounds, the vice principal of a government technical college was shot dead in the Nazimabad area on Tuesday, police and leaders of a religious organisation said.
Imran Zaidi, the vice principal of Jinnah Polytechnic College, in his late 40s, was attacked while he was driving home in his car (T-8473) from work in the evening.
The police said two assailants riding a motorbike fired multiple shots at his 1000-CC car when it was passing the Board of Secondary Education Karachi (BSEK) building.
“As told by witnesses, both attackers were wearing helmets,” said SP Tanveer Alam Odho of North Nazimabad. “The victim sustained serious injuries and was being taken to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital when he died. The killers used 9mm pistol in the attack.”
He said the police cordoned off the crime-scene to collect evidence and more details about the incident. He, however, sounded convinced that the victim was killed on sectarian grounds.
Officials at the hospital said the victim, shot at close range, sustained four bullet wounds mostly in the upper torso. The official in the medico-legal section, further stated that one of the bullets pierced the victim’s forehead.
A resident of North Karachi, Imran Zaidi was father of two and had been associated with the profession for more than 20 years.
The killing attracted strong reaction from religious circles and the teacher fraternity. Condemning the incident, they said that the provincial government and the city administration had failed to provide security to the life and property of the citizens.
“In district central alone, some 22 members of our community have been gunned down on sectarian grounds within the last three months or so,” said Allama Ali Anwar of the Majlis Wahdat-i-Muslimeen (MWM), which had organised a sit-in outside parliament in Islamabad last week to register its protest against the ongoing wave of violence against the Shia community.
He said the authorities concerned had assured the protesters of concrete measures to check the trend that had affected many parts of the country, the situation was aggravating with each passing day.
“We believe that the government is not serious in tackling the situation as it has not even removed the police officers concerned in Karachi’s central district despite so many such incidents having taken place within their remit. The people of Karachi have been left at the mercy of armed groups, who strike their targets with impunity.”
The teacher fraternity also condemned the killing and described it as a direct threat to the people associated with the noble profession.
Meanwhile, the Anjuman-i-Islamia Trust, which manages the affairs of the Jinnah Polytechnic College, has announced suspension of all activities at the institution till Thursday to mourn the death.
“We condemn the killing,” said a college spokesman, adding that Mr Zaidi had been associated with the college for many years and commanded great respect among his colleagues and students. He urged the government to investigate the murder and punish the culprits at the earliest.