Police on Friday said that based on initial investigation, the cause of death of PPP minister Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani — who was found shot dead in his house along with his wife on Thursday — appears to be a suicide.
The senior politician first killed his wife, former MPA and long-time media professional Fariha Razzaq, and then used the same weapon to commit suicide, said a press release issued by the deputy inspector general police, South Zone Karachi, on Friday.
"On the basis of the available crime scene/circumstantial evidence and initial post-mortem report, it appears that Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani killed his wife and then committed suicide with the same weapon," read the press release, adding all the empty bullet casings found at the crime scene were fired from the same weapon.
Funeral prayers for Bijarani and his wife were held shortly after Friday prayers. While Razzaq's funeral was held in Karachi's Defence Housing Authority area, prayers for Bijarani were offered in Kashmore.
Evidence from crime scene
According to the police press release, the police had received a call at 2:30pm on Thursday informing them that the bodies of Bijarani and his wife had been found on the first floor of their house.
Police officials had then rushed to the crime scene, where they found Razzaq's body lying on the floor near the entrance to the study, located adjacent to the bedroom, the statement said, while Bijarani's body was found on a couch in the same room.
Obituary: Bijarani ─ a humble tribal chief
Regarding the police's initial investigation, the press release said: "The crime scene was secured and properly photographed. Forensic, fingerprint and investigation teams were called. DVR of CCTV cameras installed at the house has been seized."
"Relevant evidence" ─ blood samples, bullet empties, fingerprints ─ was also collected from the scene.
Six individuals interviewed by the police ─ including two police guards and four domestic servants ─ revealed that an altercation was ongoing between Bijarani and his wife over the past few days, said the police. The house was locked from the inside and the door was forcibly opened by Bijarani's son and servants.
Yesterday, the police guards had told the investigators they were not sure about the origin of the sound of gunshots — besides they were not allowed to go inside the house — so they stayed put outside.
However, the police guards said they had informed a house servant about the quarrel and gunshots when he arrived at around 9.30am, who had then called Razzaq’s son from her first marriage.
According to Counter-Terrorism Department official, Raja Umar Khattab, Razzaq’s son had entered the room — locked from inside — from the kitchen’s window and found the couple lying dead. Subsequently, the police had been informed.
A day earlier, life in Karampur, Bijarani's native town, came to a standstill and a shutdown was observed in many other towns of upper Sindh as soon as the news of the couple's death reached the areas.
Born on July 10, 1946 into a prominent political family, Bijarani completed his Bachelors from National College Karachi, following which he did his LLB from Sindh Muslim Law College and Masters in Political Science.
He had served as a senator as well as an MNA and also held the portfolio of Sindh's education minister. He was elected in 2013 from PS-16 Jacobabad.
Fariha Razzaq was elected a member of the Sindh Assembly in 2002 and held the position till 2007. Her mother Nishat Afza was a member of the Punjab Assembly during the same time; both women contested the elections on PPP tickets.