PESHAWAR: The counter-terrorism department (CTD) has registered an FIR into the targeted killing of two Sikh traders on the outskirts of the provincial capital on Sunday.
Members of the Sikh minority demanded protection, while condemnations against the gun attack poured in from religious and political parties, which also demanded early arrest and punishment of the perpetrators.
The FIR was registered at the CTD police station on Sunday on the formal complaint of Guruwinder Singh, brother of slain trader Ranjeet Singh.
The complainant told the police that along with Ranjeet and neighbour Guljeet Singh, he ran a shop in Batatal Bazaar near the border of Bara tehsil of Khyber district.
Condemnations against Peshawar gun attack also pour in
He said he was in his shop when he heard gunshots, and rushed to the site, where both his brother and neighbour lied dead.
Mr Guruwinder said two unidentified motorcyclists had opened fire on the two and sped away.
The CTD registered the FIR under sections 302 and 34 of the Pakistan Penal Code for murder and common intention and Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act against unidentified attackers.
Meanwhile, Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl MPA Sardar Ranjeet Singh told a news conference at the Peshawar Press Club
on Monday that the targeted killing of the Sikh community’s members was very unfortunate as it had saddened the people of all religions.
Accompanied by All Pakistan Hindus Rights Movement chairman Haroon Sarab Diyal, Aalmi Muttahida Ulema-o-Mashaikh Council chairman Allama Mohammad Shoaib, Imamia Jirga leader Muzzaffar Ali Akhunzada and Islamic scholar Maqsood Ahmad Salfi, Christian priests and members of other non-Muslim minorities, Mr Ranjeet demanded the early arrest of the killers of Sikh traders for trial and punishment.
The speakers condemned the incident and asked the police to take ‘practical’ steps for the early arrest of killers.
They also asked for the payment of compensation to the families of the deceased and proper protection for non-Muslims and their worship places.
The speakers said non-Muslims felt completely secure in the country but some anti-state elements had started targeted them to destabilise the country.
They urged the followers of different religions to create religious harmony and extend cooperation to each other to ensure peaceful living with understanding, love and tolerance.
Meanwhile, Qaumi Watan Party chairman Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao condemned the killing of Sikh traders in Peshawar and asked the government to bring perpetrators to justice at the earliest.
During a meeting of party workers from Buner district here, the QWP chief said the government should provide security to members of minority groups.
He said the killers of Sikh men should be arrested forthwith for punishment under the law to prevent such attacks.
The QWP leader sympathised with the families of the deceased.
He complained that the law and order was deteriorating in the province but the government was not interested in taking corrective steps to control the situation.
Mr Sherpao said the number of targeted killings, robberies and street crimes had increased in the province and the people felt insecure due to the worsening law and order.
He asked his party’s office-bearers from Buner to mobilise workers and organise the party at grassroots level in order to reach out to the people and ensure the success of the party candidate in the next general elections.
The QWP chief said the party had a solid vote bank in Buner district, so the local office-bearers should double their efforts to strengthen it.
Published in Dawn, May 17th, 2022