RAWALPINDI: A customs official, allegedly investigating the money laundering case against model Ayyan Ali, was shot and killed on Tuesday. On the other hand, Pakistan Customs refuted claims that Inspector Aijaz Chaudhry was involved in the high-profile investigation.

According to the police, unidentified gunmen intercepted Inspector Chaudhry’s car near his house in the Qasimabad area at around 5:30pm on Tuesday and fired multiple shots at him. He was rushed to the Benazir Bhutto Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Meanwhile, the station house officer (SHO) at the Waris Khan police station was suspended by Regional Police Officer (RPO) Wasal Fakhar Sultan Raja for not reporting the incident to his superiors.

“The SHO reportedly registered an FIR but did not take much interest in the matter, failing to inform senior police officials,” said a senior police officer, requesting anonymity.

Officials deny links between officer’s murder and Ayyan Ali case

RPO Raja told Dawn that he suspended the SHO for failing to inform senior officials and registering the FIR under section 324 of the Pakistan Penal Code.

He said it appeared to be a case of armed robbery and the customs officer attempted to resist the robbers.

“The incident does not seem to have anything to do with the Ayyan Ali case,” he said.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Customs officials also denied reports connecting the murder of Aijaz Chaudhry with the Ayyan Ali case.

“Customs Inspector Chaudhry was neither the investigation officer in the Ayyan Ali Case nor was he present at the time of her arrest. He was in charge of the warehouse at the Benazir Bhutto International airport,” Additional Customs Collector Abdul Waheed Marwat told Dawn.

The investigation officer, ASI Fateh Mohammad, told Dawn that it appears to be an incident of target killing.

“Bullets were found lodged inside the car, on the roof and the main door which means that when shots were fired at him, he retaliated by shooting at the gunmen but missed his target,” he said.

“Preliminary investigation has failed to ascertain why he was attacked but police is speculating that either it was robbery or an act of vengeance,” the investigating officer said.

The officer said no eye-witnesses could be found but the victim’s family came out of the house when they heard gunshots and saw the shooters fleeing the scene.

Benazir Bhutto Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr Asif Qadir Mir told Dawn the patient was brought to the hospital in an unconscious state with bullet wounds on his left leg.

Dr Qadir said two of the victim’s arteries were damaged.

“The doctors operated on Aijaz Chaudhry and his condition was stable following the surgery. However, complications arose resulting in his death on Wednesday morning,” he said.

Published in Dawn, June 4th, 2015

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