KARACHI, Feb 14: Two leaders of the Shershah scrap market association were gunned down in the SITE area on Thursday night.

Police said the attack took place on State Avenue near the Siemens intersection, where two armed assailants riding a motorcycle targeted the two men — vice president of the association Shakeel Malik and general sectary Mohammad Iftikhar — who were travelling in a hi-roof vehicle.

“Both men were sitting in the front seats of the vehicle. They suffered multiple gunshot wounds in the head causing their instant death,” SITE SP Ali Asif told Dawn.

A third person, sitting in the back seat of the vehicle, survived the attack, the SP said.

“The survivor is the younger brother of one of the two men. However, he is in a state of shock and has not yet given us any statement,” the SP said. The assailants used a .30-bore pistol in the killing, the SP added.

It’s not the first time that people from the Shershah scrap market have been targeted.

On Oct 19, 2010 a group of assailants riding motorcycles stormed the Shershah scrap market and killed 12 men, mostly shopkeepers.

Following the carnage, the scrap market had remained closed for weeks and was only reopened after new police kiosks and Rangers pickets were set up there.

However, gradually security was reduced and now only a few policemen and Rangers were performing duty in the market, said a shopkeeper.

The latest killings have once again heightened the sense of insecurity among the shopkeepers of the market.

The scrap market association has announced that the market will be closed on Friday in protest over the killings.

Some law-enforcement officials noted that the killing took place on the day when there were reports of withdrawal of criminal cases against some prominent gangsters belonging to Lyari.