SAHIWAL: A man gunned down seven members of his family, including his mother, two brothers, a sister, a sister-in-law, two minor nephews and critically injured a niece, over “unfair” distribution of the family’s inherited land at Bari Rakh village on Depalpur Road, Pakpattan district, on Saturday.

As per police sources, the prime suspect, Sarwar, had a dispute over division of 48 acres of the family’s agricultural land with his brothers. Meanwhile, Sarwar’s elder brother, Iftikhar, got more than 25 acres transferred in his name and gave only five acres to the suspect and another younger brother Shaheryar.

The police sources said Sarwar harboured a grudge against Iftikhar and Shaheryar over the issue.

Locals said the village and family elders tried to resolve the issue by holding panchayats, but tension persisted among the brothers, as Sarwar insisted on redistribution of the land.

Two children, three women among those murdered; minor girl critically injured

Police sources said that on Saturday, Sarwar got enraged over the issue and first gunned down his brothers Iftikhar and Sheharyar, who were working in the fields, and later went home and killed the women, leaving his minor niece critically injured.

Police said on reaching home, the suspect first killed his mother, Basheean Bibi, who was asleep in the courtyard and later broke opened the door of a room where his sister-in-law Asia Bibi, wife of Iftikhar, her two sons, Ahad (9), Ahmed (11), his younger sister Muftah Bibi (22), had taken shelter, and sprayed them with bullets, leaving all of them dead on the spot. His seven-year-old niece Aysha was injured in the firing.

The DPO told Dawn on phone that four police teams, including a CIA team, led by two DSPs were conducting raids at different locations to arrest the suspect and his accomplices.

He said initial forensic analysis of the crime scene had been conducted and th bodies had been shifted to the Pakpattan District Headquarters Hospital for autopsy.

Punjab Inspector General of Police (IGP) Dr Usman Anwar took notice of the murders and ordered the Sahiwal regional police officer (RPO) to ensure arrest of the the killers and their accomplices.

On being informed of the incident, Pakpattan District Police Officer (DPO) Hasan Iqbal, along with Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Mr Ashraf and Saddar police SHO Rai Khizer visited the crime scene and ordered cordoning off the village for security.

The locals complained that Rescue 1122 ambulance arrived late and the injured girl Ayesha had to be shifted to the DHQ hospital in the Saddar police vehicle.

Published in Dawn, March 26th, 2023

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