A religious scholar was shot dead in a suspected targeted attack in Karachi’s Gulistan-i-Jauhar locality on Tuesday morning, according to the police.
Gulistan-i-Jauhar police said that Mufti Abdul Qayum, 45, associated with the Sunni Ulema Council was gunned down by unidentified men riding pillion on a motorcycle in the locality’s Block-9.
The incident occurred at 7am after which the body was taken to Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre to fulfil legal formalities.
East-SSP, Zubair Nazeer Shaikh said that it appeared to be a targeted killing incident.
He said the scholar, Mufti Qayum, was on foot when pillion riders fired a single bullet at his head from close range and fled. The victim was associated with prominent religious scholar Mufti Munibur Rehman, said the SSP.
Meanwhile, Mufti Munib in a statement said that Allama Sufi Abdul Qayum was a prominent Ahle Sunnat religious scholar. The victim was Khateeb and head of the Jamia Masjid Muhammadia Noorania and Islamic Centre in Architect Society, Gulistan-i-Jauhar respectively.
He was also the Head of Women Islamic Mission University in Gulshan-i-Iqbal and a former teacher of Jamia Anwarul Quran in the Gulshan-i-Iqbal seminary. He was going home after offering his Fajr prayers in the mosque when he was shot in the head as he embraced martyrdom.
Munib shares possible motive
According to Mufti Munib’s statement, the APP Society in Gulistan-i-Jauhar, Block-8 had given land in writing to Saylani Welfare International Trust to construct a mosque there. The statement said the trust had constructed the mosque and appointed their imam/khateeb owing to which, certain people started a drive to “take control” of the mosque.
According to the statement, he alleged that “it is being said” that a Qabza group (landgrabbers) linked to a mosque in APP Society was involved in the murder, but “God knows better”.
“Allama Sufi Abdul Qayum was a gentleman, soft-spoken and muttaqi (pious) person,” Mufti Munib added.
“We demand the chief minister of Sindh, provincial home minister, IG police and additional IG police Karachi to arrest the murderers and bring them to justice,” he added.
A police officer, who wished not to be named, when asked about a probable motive said that they would not jump to conclusions about its link to the mosque issue. The officer said the killers appeared to be “professional” who just fired a single shot at the victim’s head. He said it was definitely a targeted killing incident but its exact nature would be ascertained after a proper probe.