Malik Shah Khalid Khan
Malik Shah Khalid Khan

BAJAUR: Gunmen killed Awami National Party leader Malik Shah Khalid Khan and his cousin in a car attack here on Friday noon.

Malik Shah and Malik Samiullah, a PTI activist, were ambushed on Khar-Mardan Highway in Yousafabad area at around 12:40pm when they’re returning to their native Mata Shah area in a car after attending a case hearing at the Khar district courts, the family and party sources told Dawn.

Witnesses and Rescue 1122 officials said the car skidded off the road before falling into a ravine.

They said the two suffered critical wounds in the gun attack and died on the spot.

The number of attackers wasn’t immediately known.

The witnesses said the gunmen reached the place two hours before the attack and fled shortly thereafter.

The bodies were later shifted to the District Headquarters Hospital, Khar, for postmortem.

With the motive of the attack not known immediately, the ANP workers and police believe that Malik Shah Khalid was the main target of the assailants.

They said Malik Shah Khalid’s father, Malik Abdul Ghani Khan, a 55-year-old former ANP senior leader, was also killed one and a half years ago as gunmen attacked the car in which he was travelling near Haji Lawang area in June 2021.

Malik Shah Khalid and a passerby were seriously injured in that attack.

Meanwhile, the police have begun an investigation into the assassination of the ANP leader and his cousin to learn about its cause and perpetrators.

When contacted, district police officer Abdul Samad Khan said that personal enmity of the ANP leader could be the prime cause for his murder.

He said the Khar police had registered an FIR naming those involved in the killing of Shah Khalid’s father as the accused.

Published in Dawn, January 29th, 2022

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