SOUTH WAZIRISTAN: A police constable escorting a team of polio campaign surveyors embraced martyrdom in a gun attack in South Waziristan district of Khyber Pakhtun­khwa on Friday, officials said.

Constable Rahimullah Mehsood was attacked in the Manra area of Birmal tehsil, SHO Zabihullah Wazir of Raghzai police station said, explaining that he was on duty with a team of post-immunisation drive surveyors.

Polio staff confirmed to Dawn that the campaign had concluded before the holy month of Ramazan, and a post-campaign asse­ssment was underway.

Sources said the team was visiting the hilly Manra village when suspected militants surrounded the constable, asking him to surrender and hand over his official weapon.

However, Cons­table Mehsood refused to do so, declaring he would never want the people to remember him as a coward and fought until the militants opened fire on him.

According to the police, the polio monitoring staff remained unharmed in the firing.

While acting on information about the incident, a police contingent rushed to the area, officials said, adding that the locality was subsequently cordoned off and a search operation was launched.

Published in Dawn, April 6th, 2024

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