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PPP leader from Kurram killed in Peshawar

January 10, 2013

PESHAWAR, Jan 9: Unidentified gunmen killed Pakistan People’s Party, Kurram Agency president and noted physician Dr Riaz Hussain Shah in the busy commercial area of Dabgari Garden in Peshawar on Wednesday afternoon.

An official of the east cantonment police station said Dr Riaz was targeted in his car by two men armed with automatic weapons and riding a motorcycle outside his clinic a few moments after he left for home.

He added that the physician was taken to Lady Reading Hospital but succumbed to critical injuries.

A hospital source said Dr Riaz had breathed his last before being shifted to the premises.

“Dr Riaz used to come to his clinic early in the day and was in the habit to go home at 1pm and return at 4pm,” he said. According to his friends, Dr Riaz was the president of PPP, Kurram Agency and a candidate for the National Assembly seat, NA-37, from there.

They said Dr Riaz and his family had always strived for peace in Kurram Agency. He had survived two suicide bombing bids in 2008.

In Feb 2008, 63 people were killed and 200 injured when a bomb went off at his election office in NA-37, Kurram Agency.

Born on May 11, 1959, Dr Riaz was a graduate of Khyber Medical College. He was a specialist in gastroenterology and practiced at a private clinic in Habib Medical Centre, Dabgari Gardens. Dr Riaz is survived by his widow and three sons.

This was the second murder of a specialist doctor in the last few months. Earlier, noted cardiologist Dr Syed Jamal had also been killed by unidentified armed men after three months of his kidnapping from Hayatabad.

His body was found in Khyber Agency.

A police source said following the killing of Dr Jamal and the kidnapping of some others, a number of senior doctors had hired services of private guards at their clinics as acts of terrorism had caused serious unrest among their visitors.

Meanwhile, police have claimed to have beefed up security in different areas after the killing, saying there are reports about a possible attack by suspected militants.

“Our officers have strictly directed us to remain alert as the text messages about attacks on high-profile personalities have created unrest,” a police source said.

Police said they had registered an FIR against unidentified killers after Dr Riaz’s family said they had no enmity.

“Investigators will study different angles to ascertain as to who could be his killers whether his political opponents or those belong to the opposite sect,” an official of East Cantonment police station said.

When contacted, a spokesman for Imamia Students Organisation Waseem Abbas said body of Dr Riaz would be shifted from his residence at Defence Colony, Peshawar to ancestral village in Parachinar for burial. He condemned the killing and said it showed the complete failure of the government as the physician was attacked on the main road in a busy commercial area.