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SUKKUR: A 24-year-old man was shot dead and three of his close relatives were wounded in an attack on a roadside hotel in the Jumman Shah locality near Nizamuddin Mastoi village of Jacobabad district on Tuesday.

Officials at the Mubarak­pur police station quoted one of the wounded victims as stating that the attack was carried out on political basis.

Jam Khan Mastoi, 24, son of Nizamuddin Mastoi — a prominent Pakistan Peoples Party activist of the area — was killed in the attack while his brother, Akthar Mastoi, uncle Bashir Mastoi and another relative, Bilawal Mastoi, were wounded. All the victims were taken to the Jacobabad Civil Hospital where the wounded victims were provided medical treatment and a post-mortem examination of the deceased was performed.

Victims accuse PTI men of carrying out the attack

The body was handed over to the heirs, the area police said, adding that the condition of the wounded persons was out of danger.

Bashir Ahmed, speaking to local reporters and investigators alleged that the attack was carried out by Shabbir, Shah Mohammed, Hafeezullah, Ashiq and Mohammed Sualah. He claimed that the suspects belonged to the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and they had an altercation with his nephews and other family members during the electioneering for the July 25 polls.

Mr Ahmed said that the altercation had led to a brawl and his side had approached the Mubarakpur police station with a complaint against them. The SHO concerned, he added, had made an entry of the incident as a non-cognizable offence complaint, and added that both sides took the matter to the SHO a few days later but the police officer expressed his unwillingness to mediate. “Today, the other side attacked us with firearms killing my nephew out of the same enmity,” he alleged.

He said the assailants riding motorcycles drove up to the hotel and opened direct fire on Jam Khan and others sitting there.

He also accused the SHO of siding with the rival party and avoiding making any arrest.

Meanwhile, Jacobabad SSP Shoukat Ali Khatian told the media on Tuesday that he had taken notice of the incident and ordered arrest of the culprits. He noted that both sides belonged to the Mastoi community and an investigation needed to be conducted to ascertain the actual motive behind the attack.

He said raids were being conducted at different pla­ces to arrest the assailants. He held out the assurance that the culprits would be taken to task to restore justice to the victims’ families.

The SSP said that there would be no leniency shown to the culprits whatsoever their political clout.

Published in Dawn, August 29th, 2018