KARACHI, June 17: A former office-bearer of the Awami National Party died after he reportedly jumped from the fourth floor of a building to escape arrest during a raid conducted by the Rangers in Rabia City, Gulistan-i-Jauhar, early Sunday morning, police said.
Following the incident, tension gripped different areas, including Gulistan-i-Jauhar, Safoora Goth, Pehlawan Goth, University Road, Lasbela and Patel Para, where some armed men fired into the air compelling traders to pull down shutters.
Heavy contingents of police and Rangers were deployed in the localities, but the situation remained tense during the day.
The police claimed to have arrested two men for the firing that they said left at least three people wounded.
While Additional IG Ghulam Shabbir Shaikh said Bangash died after he jumped from the building to avoid arrest and Sindh ANP Secretary General Bashir Jan, who had reservations over the police version, said the body was swollen indicating that he had been administered poison, doctors at the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, where the body was shifted, reserved a post-mortem report and sent a sample to a lab for a chemical examination.
“The deceased had a criminal record as he was involved in several cases of crime, including that of targeted killing,” said the acting city police chief, Shabbir Shaikh.
He added that Liaquat Bangash had been arrested in the past also.
On Sunday morning, law-enforcers came under fire when they tried to raid the Rabia City residential complex, the officer said, explaining that the law-enforcers then cordoned off the area. Finally as they entered an apartment, he said, Liaquat Bangash tried to escape by jumping from the building but fell to the ground and died.
Initial port-mortem findings showed multiple fractures of the rib-cage as the cause of death, the officer said.
Following the autopsy, the body was shifted to Pehlawan Goth for funeral. A large number of people attended the funeral prayers.
Sindh ANP Secretary General Bashir Jan said that Liaqauat Bangash had remained a district and ward president of the party but his party membership was suspended because he was facing an inquiry.
While he did not explain the nature of the inquiry, he expressed reservations over the police version about the death of the former party leader.
Mr Jan said that Bangash was brought in a critical condition to a private hospital in Gulistan-i-Jauhar but was then referred to the JPMC, where he was pronounced dead.
He quoted party workers as saying that the body was swollen, which, according to them, indicated that he had been poisoned. He then quoted hospital sources as saying that there were marks of rope on his hands and neck and the rib cage was broken.