MUZAFFARGARH: Seraiki intellectual, writer, rights activist and Hirrak Development Centre chief executive officer Zafar Lund was shot dead at the gate of his residence in Kot Addu on Thursday. He was 55.

Two motorcyclists came to his house near the Government Girls Degree College in the afternoon and called him out. As he came out, the suspects opened fire at him and fled. He died of a bullet injury to his head.

His body was sent to the Tehsil Headquarters Hospital, Kot Addu, for postmortem.

Lund has left behind three sons, one daughter and a widow.

His funeral prayers were held at 11pm at Kot Addu and again will be offered in his native village Shadan Lund at 11am on Friday (today) where he will be laid to rest.

Talking to Dawn, District Police Officer Awais Ahmad termed the case a targeted killing.

Quoting the inspector general of Punjab police, he said the case would be registered with the Counter-Terrorism Department Police Station, Multan, which would also hold investigation.

A large number of people and social workers gathered at his residence and paid him a tribute specially for his work for displaced people of Taunsa Barrage and fishermen of the River Indus areas.

Zafar Lund was also the founder and chief organiser of Sindhu Bachao Tarla, a civil society forum aimed at protecting water rights and the communities depending on the Indus in Kot Addu. He was also a leading voice for the people affected by nuclear power project being set up in Kot Addu.

His last public appearance was on June 9 this year when he held a rally for the people displaced by the nuclear power project. On that occasion, he had said: “All electricity-related mega projects are being built in Muzaffargarh district and people of this area are only the affectees of these projects, not beneficiaries. Mercury soared to 52 degree Celsius in May this year due to these projects and loadshedding is 18 hours per day in the villages of the district. No jobs have been provided to the people of Seraiki Wasaib in the electricity projects such as Muzaffargarh thermal power plants and Kot Addu Power Project and coal power plants.”

From the platform of Sindho Bachao Tarla, Lund had organised several programmes on Seraiki Jhumar, folk songs and storytelling. He worked for education of people of backward areas and fought for the rights of children. He was called founder of Seraiki resistance.

Published in Dawn, July 15th, 2016

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