KARACHI, April 6: An activist of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party was gunned down in the Malir area while the body of a brother of a former union nazim was found in Pak Colony on Wednesday, police said. They said that Nadir Rasheed Hashmi, the former UC nazim’s brother, was kidnapped by armed men from an area close to his home in Gulbahar last week. His body was found in the Pak Colony graveyard on Wednesday and it bore severe torture and drilling marks.
The police said the kidnapping incident was witnessed by some area people and an FIR was lodged at the Rizvia police station about his kidnapping.
“The police, however, remained unable to trace the victim,” said an official at the Rizvia police station. “The family said they received only one call from a number demanding a ransom for the victim’s release.”
On Wednesday morning, the Pak Colony police came to know about a body lying in the area graveyard. The body was shifted to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, where it was finally identified as that of Nadir Rasheed Hashmi, who was in his mid-thirties.
A post-mortem examination and initial investigations suggested that the victim was brutally tortured and his captors had also drilled holes into his body.
“There was no bullet wound,” said an official at the medico-legal section of the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital. “The deceased suffered multiple fractures as well as deep wounds that also caused a huge blood loss. Sharp metal and a drill machine have also been used to torture him.”
The Pak Colony police later traced the family links of the victim and determined the fact that he was a younger brother of Amir Rasheed Hashmi, a known activist of the area, who had been elected UC Nazim in the 2001 local government elections from the Jamaat-i-Islami-backed Al-Khidmat Panel.
“The exact motive behind the killing is not clear but it seems that he was kidnapped for ransom,” said DSP Qaiser Ali Shah, the area’s supervisory police officer.
“Though the victim was not actively associated with any group, his elder brother has an uneven history of political loyalty, as he was elected UC nazim from the JI platform after quitting another political party in the area.”
He said the police had registered an FIR (75/2011) under Sections 302 (premeditated murder) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code against unidentified persons.
Later in the evening, some half-a-dozen armed men on three motorbikes attacked roadside vendors in the Malir area and killed a political activist and left a young man wounded, officials said.
They said the armed men emerged on Baba Wilayat Ali Shah Road near Juma Goth before sunrise and stopped near the road that had several stalls of foodstuffs.
“A few riders got off the motorbikes and fired at some vendors,” said DSP Ramzan Gopang. “The firing killed 30-year-old Ghulam Muhammad Baloch and left Akhtar Hussain Baloch badly wounded. The attackers left the scene in seconds.”
The body was shifted to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre for a post-mortem examination.
The police, however, remained clueless about the motive and the identity of the attackers. A few witnesses were quoted as saying that the attackers were dressed in trousers and shirts.
“The deceased was a resident of Juma Goth in Malir and used to sell soft drinks close to his home in the evening on Baba Wilayat Ali Shah Road,” said DSP Gopang.
Meanwhile, a senior leader of the PPP Karachi division, Sohail Abidi, claimed that the victim was a party activist.
“He was the sixth party member who has been brutally murdered solely on political grounds in recent weeks. It’s an attempt to harass other PPP workers in the city,” he added.