HYDERABAD: Noted neurosurgeon Dr Aftab Qureshi, who was abducted from Karachi on May 12, 2012, was gunned down on Wednesday in an exchange of fire after police conducted a raid on his captor’s house in Qasimabad area early morning.
The encounter — supervised by Citizen Police Liaison Committee (CPLC) and Karachi's Anti Violence Crime Unit (AVCU) – also led to killing of the captor, the Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) of AVCU and injuries to another policeman.
Two other hostages, Dr Ashok and his mother Kamla escaped taking advantage of the encounter. They were kidnapped from Karachi’s Memon Goth area. They were taken to CIA centre Hyderabad for interrogation.
Dr Qureshi’s body was taken to his native town Kandiaro in upper Sindh.
“I have to see whether standard operating procedures (SOP) of police whereby a police party of another district needs to take concerned police on board was followed…yes it is a requirement of the law but I need to verify it whether it was done,” DIG Sanaullah Abbasi told Dawn.com outside Civil Hospital.
CPLC chief Ahmed Chinoy defended the police action, saying right from Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Crime (Karachi) Manzoor Mughal to Inspector General Police (IGP) Sindh Mushtaq Shah were on board.
"Qureshi was gunned down by the captor who was drunk," Chinoy said quoting Dr Ashok.
Even Hyderabad’s police control was informed about the arrival of the AVCU, he said.
In fact, the lone captor-cum-kidnapper, who was later identified as Mohammad Akhtar, a resident of Usta Mohammad, Balochistan, was killed by a policeman from the Qasimabad police station, Chinoy said.
The DIG termed it a failure of the Hyderabad police who he said could not spot the location where Dr Qureshi was held hostage for 15 days.
“Of course, it is the Hyderabad police’s failure…why they didn’t have any information regarding the hideout of the captor,” the DIG said.
Enraged doctors, paramedics, nurses and hospital employees boycotted work in the Civil Hospital soon after Qureshi’s body arrived.
Work remained suspended in the outpatient department (OPD), wards and casualty wards by doctors on the call of PMA general secretary Dr Hadi Bux Jatoi.
Before being kidnapped, Dr Qureshi had recovered from a major intestinal illness. He had gone into coma and was on life support drugs when abducted.